|Illinois State Senate District 59|
| Assumed office|
| Current term ends|
January 12, 2013
Forby graduated with his High School diploma and also works as a Excavating Contractor and Farmer in addition to being a Senator.
In the 2011-2012 legislative session, Forby has been appointed to these committees:
- Committee of the Whole, Illinois Senate
- Education Committee, Illinois State Senate
- Energy Committee, Illinois State Senate
- Insurance Committee, Illinois State Senate
- Labor Committee, Illinois State Senate, Chair
- Licensed Activities Committee, Illinois State Senate
In the 2009-2010 legislative session, Forby served on these committees:
In May 2011, Gov. Pat Quinn announced that he would veto the concealed carry bill on which the Illinois Legislature had voted, if it landed on his desk. The bill would allow Illinois residents to carry concealed firearms in public.
That threat held little water because the bill had a lot of support and might win through a supermajority (71 votes in the House and 36 votes in the Senate) of votes from both chambers.
Rep. Brandon Phelps said he was trying to find enough support in the House to move the plan over to the Senate. Phelps said he wanted to call House Bill 148 for a vote on May 5, regardless of Quinn's opposition.
"I just think that (Quinn) is wrong," Phelps said. "And you agree to disagree. Sometimes people within your own party disagree with what they say. And I totally disagree with him today."
Under HB 148, Illinois residents 21 and older could apply for permits to carry concealed firearms in public, except for places like schools, churches and inside state government buildings. Applicants would need to pass a written exam, firearms training exercises and background checks.
"About two-thirds of the citizens of our state are steadfastly and strongly opposed to allow private citizens to carry loaded, concealed handguns in public places," Quinn said.
Sen. Gary Forby said the opponents of concealed carry mostly live in and around Chicago and that people downstate, and in other states, support the idea.
"I think all we are doing now, we are really helping the state of Illinois with what they got to do to get a license and stuff," Forby said. "So all you are going to do is put guns in peoples' good hands."
Quinn said the plan may lead to more violence.
"I don't think that's healthy, if you are going to the grocery store," Quinn said. "You bump into somebody accidentally, and they take offense, they can pull out a loaded, concealed handgun to assuage their anger."
Sen. Larry Bomke said the plan would deter violence, because potential burglars would less likely rob homeowners with guns.
"I can only hope that he changes his mind once the bill gets to his desk," Bomke said. "And I feel fairly confident it will. But it will be important that we have enough votes, a supermajority, to override his decision if he chooses to veto the bill."
Rep. Jason Barickman said lawmakers have been working carefully to craft the plan.
“At the end of the day, we certainly would appreciate the governor's support,” Barickman said. “But with him making it clear that he opposes this right, this constitutional right, this right that a mass number of people support. I think that we just have to continue lining up our legislative votes and push forward."
Rep. Norine Hammond hopes that's enough support.
“A lot of people have worked on this very hard — lots of law enforcement input,” she said. “I think it is a very strong bill. And hopefully we could get it passed," she said.
In the end though, Rep. Richard Morthland said it won’t matter what the governor chooses to do with the legislation if there are enough votes.
"There is a last minute roll call being taken just trying to figure out where people are, and how we are doing, and do we have exactly the number of votes we need, how close are we,“ Morthland said. “I think it looks good. Hopefully we will be able to move it this week."
|Illinois State Senate, District 59 (2008)|
|Gary Forby (D)||49,552|
|Ken Burzynski (R)||46,727|
In 2008, Forby collected $1,395,610 in donations.
Listed below are those that contributed most to his campaign.
|Illinois Senate Democratic Fund||$450,940|
|Friends of Clayborne||$200,000|
|Illinois Federation of Teachers||$65,587|
|Illinois Health Care Association||$55,013|
|Southern & Central Illinois Laborers District Council||$43,000|
|Illinois Education Association||$42,900|
|Associated Fire Fighters of Illinois||$29,500|
|Illinois State Medical Society||$25,000|
|Friends of Don Harmon||$20,000|
|Silverstein for Senator||$18,000|
|Deep Blue Illinois||$15,000|
|Service Employees Local 880||$11,000|
|International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers||$9,450|
|Illinois Realtors Association||$8,900|
|AFSCME Illinois Council 31||$6,300|
|Associated Beer Distributors of Illinois||$6,000|
Forby represents Illinois Senate District 59. District 59 includes South Central Illinois.
Gary is married to Angie Forby. They have four children and reside in Benton, Illinois.
- Biography from the Illinois General Assembly
- Legislative profile from Project Vote Smart
- Biography from Project Vote Smart
- Campaign Contributions: 2008, 2006, 2004, 2002, 2000
- Sen. Forby on State Surge
- Gary Forby on Facebook
- "Illinois General Assembly" List of Illinois Senate Committees, July 28, 2009
- "Gov’s threatened veto of concealed carry may not matter," Illinois Statehouse News, May 3, 2011
- Illinois Senate election results for 2008
- Forby Campaign Donors
- "Illinois Chamber of * Commerce Committee, Illinois State Senate, Northeast Illinois Legislative District Maps, July 29, 2009
|Illinois Senate District 59
| Succeeded by|