Big win for gun-rights groups: Federal appeals court tosses state ban on carrying concealed weapons – In a huge win for gun-rights groups, a federal appeals court in Chicago Tuesday tossed the state’s ban on carrying concealed weapons and gave Illinois’ Legislature 180 days to craft a law legalizing concealed carry. “The debate is over. We won. And there will be a statewide carry law in 2013,” said Todd Vandermyde, a lobbyist for the National Rifle Association. In its majority opinion, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in two cases downstate that challenged the state’s longstanding prohibition against carrying concealed weapons.