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Rauner Proposes Bringing Back Death Penalty, Other Gun Measures, in Amendatory Veto

via Illinois Central Management Services video
Gov. Rauner addresses the media on his amendatory veto proposals at an event at an Illinois State Police forensic laboratory in Chicago on May 14.

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner says the state should be able to execute those who kill police officers or commit mass shootings. The Governor proposed that and several other measures on Monday in an amendatory veto of gun legislation.

The bill, HB1468, would have required anyone buying so-called assault-style weapons to wait 72 hours before picking up their purchase from a gun dealer.

Illinois’ death penalty was abolished in 2011, under then-Governor Pat Quinn. Years before, Governor George Ryan commuted the sentences of all the state’s death row prisoners after criminal justice advocacy groups exposed a pattern of wrongful convictions.

Governor Rauner says bringing state executions back  for certain cases will “dramatically improve public safety.”

“These individuals who commit mass murder, who choose to murder a law enforcement officer, they deserve to have their life taken. They deserve that,” he told reporters at an event in Chicago.

Rauner changed the legislation to also further the 72 hour waiting period state lawmakers initially passed for assault-style weapon sales, saying it should apply to all gun sales. Among other things, he also added in a bump stock ban and a plan to allow courts to take guns away from those deemed dangerous.

As for the death penalty, Rauner says a jury would have to prove “beyond all doubt” that an alleged shooter is guilty before they could be sent to death row.

Illinois lawmakers can now either vote to accept the changes Rauner proposed, or try to override the veto altogether. They'll have 15 days to do so once the House formally receives the Governor's veto message.

Here's a full run-down of the proposals from Gov. Rauner's press office:

Sam is a Public Affairs Reporting intern for spring 2018, working out the NPR Illinois Statehouse bureau.
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