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Illinois Counties Declare Themselves ‘Gun Sanctuaries'; Oregon Voters Could be Next

Gun-rights advocates march to illinois state capitol

David Campbell is one of the people who started the gun sanctuary movement that is moving into Oregon after sweeping through the rural counties of Illinois.

Campbell, a member of the Effingham County Board in rural Illinois, wasn’t happy to learn the state’s General Assembly was working on gun-control legislation that he considered to be unconstitutional. Campbell decided to do what county board members do best.

He wrote a resolution.

The Effingham board adopted his resolution April 16. It declared Effingham County to be a gun “sanctuary” where county employees — like sheriff’s deputies — were prohibited from enforcing gun laws deemed unconstitutional.

WCRB-TV reported Campbell admitted to local prosecutor Bryan Kibler that he chose the word “sanctuary” because it was being used by more liberal government bodies, like the Chicago City Council, to protect illegal immigrants.

“Rural areas are losing political power because of population decline, and urban and suburban communities want to come up with solutions to gun violence that infringe on the ways of life of rural areas, and that ticks us off,” Kibler said.

Among the new gun laws moving through the Illinois legislature in May was House Bill 2354, which would allow police to take firearms away from people who are thought to be a danger to themselves or others. It is on Gov. Bruce Rauner’s desk awaiting his signature.

“In far too many mass shooting events, family members identified disturbing behavior in their loved ones and didn’t know where to turn,” said state Sen. Julie Morrison (D). “In some cases, when this behavior was reported, there was no legal mechanism to step in and prevent potential tragedy.”

Another bill awaiting Rauner’s signature would require Illinois gun dealers to be certified by the state.

And the Illinois House has approved a bill that would impose a 72-hour “cooling-off period” on all gun purchases.

Campbell is not the only rural Illinois resident unhappy with Springfield lawmakers telling the rest of the state how to live.

The Bloomington Pantagraph reported last month that more than a dozen areas in Illinois, including Effingham County, had approved “gun sanctuary” laws. “I am so proud of these counties that have stepped forward, that I am about ready to explode,” Campbell told Cam & Co. on NRATV.

Campbell said gun-rights groups and politicians in 50 Illinois counties had asked for copies of his resolution.

Shelby County, Ill., could be the next to declare itself to be a gun sanctuary.

John Warren, a Shelby County resident and gun owner, asked his county board to back the move in part because of the new gun-control legislation approved by the Illinois Legislature.

“Our general assemblies are wanting to regulate, regulate, regulate,” Warren said.

Aaron Barringer teaches kids how to shoot at the Shelby County Junior Sports Club. He also supports the idea of standing up to gun-controlling legislators.