SCOTUS denies one appeal of assault weapons ban while another waits in the wings

SCOTUS denies one appeal of assault weapons ban while another waits in the wings

High court refuses to hear Rep. Caulkins’ appeal of Illinois Supreme Court case

Capitol News Illinois

SPRINGFIELD – The U.S. Supreme Court has denied one request to review the Illinois assault weapon ban, but many believe the court is more likely to take up another challenge to the law later this year.

The high court turned down a request by Republican State Rep. Dan Caulkins, of Decatur, to hear an appeal of the case he lost before the Illinois Supreme Court in August.

In his appeal, Caulkins argued that he was denied a fair hearing at the state supreme court because two of the state justices had received large campaign contributions from Democratic Gov. JB Pritzker, who signed the assault weapon ban into law.

Caulkins also claimed the law is unconstitutional because it allows some people to keep their assault weapons if they acquired those guns before the ban took effect.

The justices at the U.S. Supreme Court gave no reason for declining to hear Caulkins’ appeal. But many people expect the court to take up a separate challenge to the law from the National Association for Gun Rights, which argues more broadly that the ban violates the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against the gun rights group in November. The group is expected to file its appeal with the U.S. Supreme Court within the next several weeks.

Capitol News Illinois is a nonprofit, nonpartisan news service covering state government. It is distributed to hundreds of newspapers, radio and TV stations statewide. It is funded primarily by the Illinois Press Foundation and the Robert R. McCormick Foundation, along with major contributions from the Illinois Broadcasters Foundation and Southern Illinois Editorial Association.

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