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Tougher Gun Laws Are Revisited in Springfield

State of Illinois

A controversial idea to toughen gun sentences is being revisited in Springfield. Chicago’s police superintendent says Illinois lawmakers can reduce gun crime by passing stricter gun laws.

But the National Rifle Association fought previous attempts to pass a bill. Members argue legal gun owners could get caught in the wide-ranging proposal. 

Mike Zalewski - a suburban Democratic state representative - supports harsher gun penalties. He says the past failures means he’ll tweak the bill.

"We need to design a system that’s narrow in nature to really accomplish what everyone agrees we need to accomplish."

Zalewski says that means writing the new law in a way that it applies strictly to violent people and giving judges flexibility at sentencing. He says he’ll try to pass that law - among other big changes to the criminal justice system this year.