By Beth Baumann
Years ago, Springfield Armory and Rock River Arms formed a lobby group, known as the Illinois Firearms Manufacturers Association (IFMA). A few weeks ago, the gun manufacturing companies disbanded the lobbying organization after a gun licensing scheme came to light.
Illinois Senate Bill 1657 would require a state license for all gun dealers for the prairie state. IFMA was initially opposed to the legislation but their lobbyist, Jay Keller, made a backroom deal. IFMA would no longer be opposed to the legislation if gun manufacturers were removed from the requirement.
The original version of the bill did not exempt firearms manufacturers. IFMA became neutral on the bill once Senator Don Harmon amended the bill to exempt gun manufacturers.
SB1657 initially left committee and went to the floor for a vote, where it passed by one vote.
“The legislative process is a fluid process. The bill has only moved through one chamber, and it is still in the process. We fully support the Second Amendment and stand by it. The Illinois Manufacturers Association will continue to fight and protect not only manufacturers but dealers and the gun owner as well,” Springfield Armory CEO Dennis Reese said in a statement.
Word of the backroom deal has spread throughout the Second Amendment community. People are boycotting Springfield Armory and Rock River Arms.
— Blair Baker (@RealBlairBaker) May 3, 2017
— Uncompromising 2ndA (@The2ndA) May 4, 2017
@Springfield_Inc When SB1657 passes the Judiciary Committee today in Illinois it marks the end of my interest in ever owning your firearms
— Matt (@johngaltGRT) May 16, 2017
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