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Illinois: Proposed Cook County Budget Will Penalize Gun Owners By More Than Doubling The Cost Of Ammunition

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Cook County Board President and Commissioners Need to Hear from You TODAY!

Today, Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle announced a 2013 budget plan that will penalize, through taxation, all purchases of firearms and ammunition in Cook County.  If adopted, this proposal would impose a tax of a nickel per bullet and $25 for each firearm purchased, ultimately amounting to a massive penalty.  Cook County would be the first jurisdiction in the country to impose a per-bullet and gun tax.  Based on current prices, this penalty would more than double the price of some ammunition —for example, the price of a value box of .22 LR ammunition would increase by more than 150% under this proposal!  Please contact Board President Preckwinkle and the Cook County Board of Commissioners TODAY and respectfully demand that they halt their blatant attacks on the Second Amendment.

Politicians at all levels are always looking for more “revenues” to offset and subsidize their spending addiction, and Cook County is no different.  This proposal is also being sold to the public as a way to reduce crime.  However, this is nothing more than a politically motivated stunt to impose a punitive tax on a targeted group of law-abiding citizens who seek to exercise a constitutionally guaranteed right.  This proposed plan would subject purchases of any firearm or ammunition to an additional tax far above and beyond the rate at which other goods and services in this area are taxed.  Those who would pay this tax are not misusing firearms or causing the violence in Cook County.  This penalty would only negatively affect law-abiding gun owners, and in this time of economic trouble would severely harm legitimate business owners inside Cook County as people look to avoid the penalties by purchasing guns and ammunition elsewhere.

Law-abiding gun owners in Cook County are already subjected to inequitable measures restricting their Second Amendment rights.   And now, with this so-called “violence tax,” a highly specific subset of Illinois citizens will be forced to foot the bill for the actions of violent Chicago gang members and criminals.  These sorts of measures constitute an attack on the wallets of those law-abiding citizens who are not the cause of this problem, while failing to address the real causes of Chicago’s escalating levels of violence.

There is no evidence to suggest that targeting law-abiding gun owners will solve Cook County’s crime problems.  In fact, the evidence points to the just the opposite, as a link exists between less restrictive firearm laws and lower crime rates — especially violent crime.  The percentage of the United States population in states that champion Second Amendment rights has increased, while the murder rate in this country has decreased dramatically - falling by more than half since 1991.  If Cook County were to adopt laws that target criminals instead of law-abiding citizens, the area may soon see a similar decrease in crime.

The intent and consequence of this measure will be to drive up the price of guns and ammunition, thereby burdening honest gun owners and impeding their fundamental right to self-defense.  Please contact Board President Preckwinkle and the Cook County Board of Commissioners TODAY and demand that they halt their attacks on the Second Amendment. For a full list of Cook County Commissioners and their contact information, please click here.

Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle

118 North Clark Street, Room 537

Chicago, Illinois 60602

Phone: (312) 603-6400

Fax: (312) 443-4397



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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.