The Republican candidates for governor are against a state-level ban on assault weapons. Gov. Pat Quinn has been trying to bring about an assault weapons ban in Illinois, so far without success. State Sen. Kirk Dillard (R-Hinsdale), one of the Republican candidates for governor, says that’s not something the state should regulate, if the goal is to thwart criminals.

“They run these, you know, any weapons across state lines, so it’s gotta be a federal issue. We can’t do it piecemeal, but I’m not for, for a lot of reasons, a ban on assault weapons at the state level,” he said. Among the reasons: It’s difficult to define in a statute what firearms qualify as assault weapons.

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There was a federal assault weapons ban on the books for 10 years, but it lapsed in 2004.

Candidates Bruce Rauner, State Sen. Bill Brady (R-Bloomington) and state Treasurer Dan Rutherford say they’re OK with individuals possessing assault weapons as long as they have training and pass a background check.

Cook County has an assault weapons ban, as do several cities within Cook County.

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