Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan [official website] on Tuesday requested [press release] that the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit [official website] review a decision last month that struck down [JURIST report] Illinois' ban on carrying concealed weapons. A three-judge panel of the Seventh Circuit, relying on the Supreme Court's decision in District of Columbia v. Heller [opinion, PDF] ruled in December that the concealed carry ban unconstitutionally infringed on the right to bear arms for self-defense. On Tuesday Madigan filed a petition for re-hearing en banc, which is a request for all 10 judges on the Seventh Circuit to hear the case. Madigan explained that she is seeking a rehearing because she believes the Seventh Circuit ruled too broadly in its December decision, and that the decision conflicts with rulings by two other federal appeals courts:
In ruling that Illinois must allow individuals to carry ready-to-use firearms in public, the 7th Circuit Court's decision goes beyond what the US Supreme Court has held and conflicts with decisions by two other federal appellate courts. Based on those decisions, it is appropriate to ask the full 7th Circuit to review this case and consider adopting an approach that is consistent with the other appellate courts that have addressed these issues after the US Supreme Court's landmark Heller and McDonald decisions.It is unclear when the Seventh Circuit will decide whether to rehear the case.
Illinois lawmakers, particularly those in Chicago, have struggled to limit firearm possession and advance gun control [JURIST news archive] initiatives in the city without violating the Constitution. In June the US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois [official website] struck down [JURIST report] a portion of the Chicago Firearms Ordinance [text, PDF] that prevents firearm purchase by individuals who have "been convicted by a court in any jurisdiction of ... unlawful use of a weapon that is a firearm" because such a standard is unconstitutionally vague. The Ordinance was unanimously approved [JURIST report] by the Chicago City Council in July 2010, and imposes strict regulations on firearm possession. In particular, residents who possess firearms are required to keep them inside their homes, and are not permitted to take their guns into the yard, garage or porch of the home. The legislation was enacted four days after the Supreme Court ruled in McDonald v. Chicago [JURIST report] that the Second Amendment right to bear arms is applicable to the states as well as the federal government. The decision effectively struck down Chicago's former handgun ban, as it prohibited citizens from keeping handguns in their homes under any circumstances.