Even if voters in Rock Island and Henry County say "yes" adamantly and overwhelmingly to concealed carry on Nov. 6, it will not become the law of the land. But it will send a loud and clear message to lawmakers in Springfield that voters here believe strongly in the Second Amendment and the right it protects for qualified applicants to carry a weapon. We support a strictly drawn law granting Illinoisans a right that already is legal in every other state in the union. Only the General Assembly can make it so. State Reps. Pat Verschoore, D-Milan, Rich Morthland, R-Cordova, and Don Moffitt, R-Gilson, and state Sen. Mike Jacobs have supported legislation to approve concealed carry. The problem isn't here, however, it's in metro areas, especially Chicago, where politicians have never met a gun restriction they didn't like. Gov. Pat Quinn, too, is dependably anti-gun. That position might be harder to maintain, however, if the Chicago Democrat see what the rest of the state thinks regarding concealed carry. And if he vetoes a bill creating concealed carry, lawmakers will need a super-majority to overturn it. Successful advisory campaigns here and elsewhere might serve to convince enough fence-sitters to sign onto a carefully crafted measure to protect it should the governor decide to reject it. If you believe as we do that Illinoisans should have the Constitutional rights guaranteed elsewhere, we recommend Rock Island and Henry County voters say yes.
Today is Friday, March 7, the 66th day of 2014. There are 299 days left in the year. 1864 -- 150 years ago: The ferry boat came up to her dock yesterday and was punching away at the ice, which is crowded up against the Iowa shore. 1889 -- 125 years ago: J.C. Bromley, of Rock Island, has received a patent on a steam activated valve. 1914 -- 100 years ago: Major. C.W. Hawes, head clerk of the Modern Woodmen of America, was honored by department chiefs on his 73rd birthday 1939 -- 75 years ago: Mayor Robert Galbraith declared that 75 percent of the people here have talked to "favor construction of Rock Island's new city hall in Spencer Square." 1964 -- 50 years ago: C.H. Langman & Sons, Rock Island, has been awarded the general contract for partial rehabilitation and modernization of the main building at the East Moline State Hospital. The Langman firm bid $424,839. 1989 -- 25 years ago: The cost of living in the Quad-Cities is 6.8 percent less than the average of 260 metropolitan areas.