SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WTVO) — The mass shooting at a school in Nashville reignited the gun control debate at the national level, but gun owners marched on the Illinois Capitol on Wednesday to push back against the laws that the state has already passed.
They marched from the Bank of Springfield Center to the front steps of the Capitol. Wednesday was an annual lobbying day for gun owners, but the stakes were raised this year.
This was the first rally since the state passed its assault weapons ban. Governor JB Pritzker avoided picking a fight when asked about the rally.
“If people want to gather and make their point, this is obviously the city to do it in, with the legislators here in session,” Pritzker said. “So, we welcome everybody, all views.”
“We want to put the face on law abiding citizens before the legislature and let them know that they are not the problem,” added Richard Pearson, executive director of the Illinois State Rifle Association. “The problem are the criminals and the people who engage in criminal activities.”
The first hearing for the federal lawsuit is happening in two weeks. Gun owners are calling for a preliminary injunction on the law.