On Feb. 22, Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed House Bill 3653, the controversial criminal justice reform bill that was rammed through the General Assembly during lame-duck session earlier this year.
State Sen. Terri Bryant (R-Murphysboro), a vocal opponent to the legislation, issued the following statement following the Governor’s actions:
“By signing House Bill 3653, the Governor made a statement to the citizens of Illinois that he doesn’t value the democratic process or the safety of Illinoisans.
"This was a bill that was rammed through the General Assembly without proper public input or vetting, completely disregarding the process by which a real representative government should be operating.
"While debating criminal justice issues during subject-matter hearings, opponents pointed to public danger after public danger if these changes to law enforcement were to take effect. Then at the 11th hour, with only minutes of debate, House Bill 3653 was ramrodded through the General Assembly.
"Now that we've had the past few weeks to truly break down the hundreds of pages contained in this proposal, it has become evident this is a law that will protect criminals, threaten our law enforcement community and endanger public safety. It’s shameful.
"The Governor’s actions today make one thing clear—he doesn’t care about or value a safer Illinois.”