SPRINGFIELD — Gun rights supporters Monday appealed a federal judge’s decision to keep intact Illinois’ ban on carrying loaded guns in public.
In documents filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Springfield, attorneys for the Second Amendment Foundation asked for a review of Judge Sue Myerscough’s ruling, in which she dismissed the organization’s challenge of the state’s one-of-a-kind ban on carrying concealed weapons.
In a 48-page decision issued Friday, Myerscough said the state’s law barring citizens from legally carrying concealed firearms doesn’t violate the U.S. Constitution because the Supreme Court has recognized the right to bear arms only within a home, not outside.
“Plaintiffs argue that the Second Amendment protects a general right to carry guns that includes a right to carry operable guns in public,” Myerscough wrote. “However, neither the United States Supreme Court nor any United States Court of Appeals has recognized such a right.
“Further, the Supreme Court has not recognized a right to bear firearms outside the home and has cautioned courts not to expand on its limited holding.”
Alan Gottlieb, executive vice president of the Bellevue, Wash.-based Second Amendment Foundation, said his group will take its fight to the nation’s high court in hopes of clarifying the law.
“The Second Amendment does not say the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed except outside your home or that it only applies inside your house. We don’t check our constitutional rights at the front door,” Gottlieb said in a release.
“We’re disappointed with the decision, and we are appealing,” said attorney David Jensen, who represented Michael Moore of Champaign in the case.
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The Illinois Attorney General’s office, which represented the state in the case, did not immediately return messages.
Moore and others want state lawmakers or a court to bring the state in line with the rest of the nation when it comes to carrying weapons. His lawsuit is among at least two cases winding through the federal legal system.
Last year, a concealed carry proposal fell six votes short of moving out of the Illinois House. Supporters say they may ask for another vote on the issue this spring.