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State Rep. Dan Caulkins Jumps the Gun on Pritzker Lawsuit, Seeks Summary Judgment on Equal Protection Violations



By Illinois Review

As Illinois Review reported last month, State Rep. Dan Caulkins of Decatur had filed a lawsuit challenging Gov. JB Pritzker’s Assault Weapons Ban nearly identical to the three lawsuits filed by former Republican AG candidate Thomas DeVore.

With Temporary Restraining Orders granted in all four of the cases, DeVore recently moved to transfer and consolidate the cases before Effingham County Judge Joshua Morrison.

Judge Morrison was the first judge to enter a Temporary Restraining Order, on January 20th, and that decision was affirmed on appeal by the Appellate Court, 5th District.

But in a surprising turn of events, counsel for Rep. Caulkins filed a two-paragraph opposition to DeVore’s consolidation motion yesterday with the Illinois Supreme Court. Joining with Gov. JB Pritzker and Attorney General Kwame Raoul, Rep. Caulkins is opposing consolidation on the basis that his case – while nearly identical to and filed after DeVore’s initial case – is procedurally different than DeVore’s three cases.

As it turns out, counsel for Rep. Caulkins had reached an agreement with the Illinois AG’s office to file cross-motions for summary judgment on the claims, and those motions also were filed yesterday.

Rep. Caulkins has moved for summary judgment on the basis that the Assault Weapons Ban violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Illinois Constitution, the basis for which the Temporary Restraining Orders have been put into place.

The Assault Weapons Ban includes seemingly arbitrary exceptions to enforcement of the ban for certain groups of people, like active and retired law enforcement, active military but not retired veterans, prison guards and private security.

In other words, a mall cop is exempt from the Assault Weapons Ban and is free to purchase an AR-15, one of the banned weapons, but a retired member of SEAL Team Six is not.

But the cross-motion for summary judgment filed yesterday by Defendants Gov. JB Pritzker and AG Raoul is not on the same Equal Protection issue. Rather, defendants’ motion challenges only Rep. Caulkins’ procedural claims.

The parties now have the opportunity to respond to each other’s cross-motions.

Put another way, Rep. Caulkins appears to have laid out his entire hand on the Equal Protection argument, now giving defendants the opportunity to potentially shore up their case to stave off summary judgment.

In DeVore’s initial case, DeVore has served discovery requests on defendants seeking to establish that there was no basis in the legislative record for the exemptions that give rise to DeVore’s Equal Protection argument. According to DeVore, the AG’s Office has declined to answer the discovery requests and is seeking an extension of time to June before having to answer.

It begs the question why Rep. Caulkins would have agreed to jump the gun on summary judgment on the Equal Protection argument and would have agreed with defendants to file cross-motions yesterday on inapposite issues.

As Illinois Review previously reported, Rep. Caulkins has come under fire for naming an unincorporated association – Law-Abiding Gun Owners of Macon County – as a plaintiff, supposedly on behalf of more than 600 individuals who believed they were joining the lawsuit and made financial donations to Rep. Caulkins’ campaign account.

The cross-motion for summary judgment filed by Gov. JB Pritzker and AG Raoul does not challenge the standing of the unincorporated association.

An adverse ruling on Rep. Caulkins’ summary judgment motion could threaten DeVore’s three cases and the Temporary Restraining Orders in place for the 4713 Illinoisans and 148 federal firearms dealers, who currently are exempted from the restrictions put into place by the Assault Weapons Ban.

Please continue to follow Illinois Review and DeVore Law Offices for more updates as they become available.


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  1. This gun ban law is nothing less than persecution of gun owners in violation of both the Illinois and US Constitutions by fascist democrats in the Illinois state legislature. The Jim Crow southern democrats moved to Illinois, they still enact law which is contrary to the constitutions. The unalienable right to keep and bear arms is protected from govt abuse by being in the Bill of Rights. The Illinois Bill of Rights enshrines inalienable rights like that of free speech, religious freedom, and to keep and bear arms. It’s important to remember, the Bill of Rights does not grant rights, it enshrines and secures our inalienable rights from government abuse. To say that the Bill of Rights confers our rights, is incorrect. The fundamental organic law of our Declaration of Independence (DOI) tells us our unalienable rights were granted to us by our Creator. Our unalienable rights are woven into the fabric of natural law by our creator. As such, they pre-date our country’s laws, proving the Bill of Rights does not grant us our inalienable rights. I know that comes as a surprise to ignorant power abusing Chicago area legislators. We possess our inalienable rights regardless of any documents. Section One of the Illinois Bill of Rights spells it out:

    Section 1. Inherent and Inalienable Rights; All men are by nature free and independent and have certain inherent and inalienable rights among which are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. To secure these rights and the protection of property, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

    When the Illinois state government arrogantly refuses to follow or enact laws in pursuance of the U.S. and Illinois state constitutions their action is lawless; it’s not restrained or controlled by law, not regulated by or based on law.
    The function of a state constitution is to create the civil government and define its lawful powers; the state constitution tells govt:

    • What it must do
    • What it can’t do (Bill of Rights, etc)
    • And what it may lawfully do

    Obeying the state constitution is not optional for the Illinois state govt. I have come to the conclusion that this onerous gun ban bill violates the US Constitution’s supremacy clause because the Illinois gun ban infringes the right to keep and bear arms by the militia and runs contrary to the US Constitution, specifically that of Article I, §8, clauses 15 and 16 ; which could and would interfere with Congress’ power to “organize, arm, and discipline, the Militia. Congress has the constitutionally granted authority to call up the militia, the fascists in the Illinois legislature cannot infringe upon that power by restricting the right to keep and bear arms for the militia. I wish the Illinois legislature democrats would read the constitutions they swore an oath to uphold.

    The Declaration of Independence is part of American Law, there are those who disagree. Professor John Eidsmoe writes: “The role of the Declaration of Independence in American law is often misconstrued. Some believe the Declaration is simply a statement of ideas that has no legal force whatsoever today. Nothing could be further from the truth. The Declaration has been repeatedly cited by the U.S. Supreme Court as part of the fundamental law of the United States of America.” The DOI states in part:

    “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed”

    The definition of Inalienable Rights from a law dictionary: “Personal rights held by an individual which are not bestowed by government law, custom, or belief, and which cannot be taken or given away, or transferred to another person, are referred to as “inalienable rights.” Hey democrats, stop treating our unalienable rights as privileges granted by govt.

    The “police power” clause n Article 1, Sec. 22, doesn’t permit the Ill. Legislature to ban specific types of arms. It permits them to say you can’t take your arms into a State Prison, or a State Courthouse, or an insane asylum, and such like places; types of arms altogether; but it doesn’t permit them to ban, tax, and regulate outside the police power. When will the fascist democrats learn, we don’t live on their plantation .

    In McCulloch v. Maryland (1819), the SCOTUS majority opined “the power to tax is the power to destroy” the very reason why govt cannot lawfully tax a constitutionally protected unalienable right. The dictatorial democrats in the Illinois general assembly and our power abusing governor are using taxation and regulation of the right to keep and bear arms to infringe by criminalizing gun and ammo ownership.

  2. Per the 14th Amendment, Section One, clause 2

    “No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States”

    This clause states: No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States.

    The “due process” and “privileges & immunities” clause of Section 1 of the 14th Amendment prohibit States from exercising “red flag” gun confiscation laws. We also have an “immunity” from government interference with our God given right to self-defense; and no property may be lawfully taken from any person without “due process of law” which means: pursuant to the Judgment of his peers after a Fair Trial!

    A state government that arrogantly refuses to follow or enact gun laws in pursuance with the U.S. and Illinois state constitutions is subversive. When they are not restrained by law or not regulated by or based on law, they are dictatorial. When acts of the national government are authorized by the US Constitution, States cannot lawfully contradict such acts, that means Illinois too.

    It is an ancient Principle of Law that a “law” which is contrary to the Constitutions is “no law at all”. it is void ab initio (void from the beginning) and binds no one.