ISRA chief Pearson tells members to stay alert
With the Illinois General Assembly now on recess and less than a full-month of legislative days remaining, Illinois State Rifle Association (ISRA) Executive Director Richard Pearson has warned members to be on high alert.
“I expect the bills that might move in Springfield are most likely shell bills,” Pearson said in a bulletin to ISRA members. “Shell bills are bills that make small, insignificant changes in some law and are then passed through Committee; they have the language stripped out of the bill and completely new language put in the bill. It is very possible that the bills we will be fighting will be completely different than the ones we have been talking about.”
Many ISRA members will be at the National Rifle Association's annual meeting later this month in Indianapolis, and Pearson insists there is much work to do.
“In the last few decades, Illinois has been on the front lines fighting the anti-gun movement,” Pearson added in the bulletin. “We have suffered blistering anti-gun attacks. We have survived. Creative ideas like the Gun Sanctuary County movement started here in Illinois. Now we see that idea spreading to states that have been traditionally bulwarks of the Second Amendment. The reason this phenomenon is happening is that many states that were seen as solid Second Amendment states are under full-scale attack by the anti-gun left.”
Pearson said part of the answer for legal gun owners in Illinois lies in empowering new leaders.
“Gun owners in states like Illinois have to change some seats, particularly in the U.S. Senate,” he wrote. “In 2020, we will have that chance. Senator Richard Durbin will be up for election. It is my guess that Durbin will run again but only serve a couple of years, and then pass the seat on to another liberal Democrat, so whoever gets the seat will be able to run as an incumbent. Gun owners need to fight this in a couple of ways, starting with the primary election.”
Finally, Pearson encouraged his membership to be active while remaining thoughtful.
“Gun owners have to vote, work and donate with their brains, not with their hearts,” he added. “We must elect the best candidate that can win. Not necessarily the one that sounds the best.”