After grading the 2017 Illinois legislative session, there were three members of the State Senate that received perfect 100% scores while taking a minimum of four actions on graded legislation. We are happy to endorse two of those members for reelection - Sen. Julie Morrison of District 29 and Jacqueline Collins of District 16.
(The third, Ira Silverstein, is embroiled in a sexual harassment scandal, and we humbly suggest the people of Illinois' 8th District choose one of his four Democratic opponents in the primary.)
Collins is not up for reelection until 2020, but Morrison has drawn a Republican challenger for her seat next year, and we are happy to give her our wholehearted endorsement. While Morrison received a 7% score from the National Rifle Association in 2016, it was for reasons we have been unable to discern. This is another indication that the NRA's ratings are deeply flawed and should not be used by gun control advocacy groups to determine who to support. There is nothing in her voting record as far as we are concerned that indicate any weakness on the issue of gun regulation.
In 2017, Morrison was a standout . In addition to scoring a perfect 100%, she was at the top of our report because of the number of pieces of legislation she was involved in. She sponsored The Lethal Violence Order of Protection Act, and sponsored and voted to pass The Gun Dealer Licensing Act. She was also the chief sponsor of SB 2231, which would prohibit concealed firearms in churches To us, though, it is her work on SB 890 that sets her apart.
In Illinois, police are required to track guns owned by people who have had their gun ownership cards (FOIDs) revoked because of mental illness. In 2015, the Chicago Sun-Times discovered this was happening only rarely, leaving guns in the hands of those who should not have had them.
In one case, the Tribune reported, a Crystal Lake lawyer was caught twice within about nine months with a loaded gun in has car after his FOID card had been revoked. Last year, he was accused of threatening to kill a state employee. Yet police recently found 56 handguns and rifles and thousands of rounds of ammunition in his home.
SB 890, sponsored by Morrison and Collins, was written to ensure that these weapons are properly confiscated from people who have lost the right to have them, and provides penalties for those who fail to comply. Morrison had sponsored similar legislation, SB 2211, in 2016, but it never received a vote.
Sen. Morrison will be challenged in 2018 by relative unknown Barrett Davie. She won her seat in 2012 with 54% of the vote and expanded her margin in 2016, winning by 18 points. The district is anchored in the Chicago Metro area and includes Deerfield Park and Prospect Heights.