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Article updated: 10/11/2012 4:34 PM

Concealed carry divides 84th House hopefuls

By Marie Wilson

Both candidates for the 84th state House seat say they hold firearm owners identification cards, but Stephanie Kifowit and Pat Fee say they would vote differently on a plan to allow concealed carry in Illinois.

As a Marine Corps veteran, Kifowit, 40, of Aurora, said she supports the Second Amendment right to bear arms. But she's noticed voters in the newly drawn district have more "moderate" views.

"Right now, I need to represent the voters of the 84th District," Kifowit said. "And going door-to-door and talking to a lot of individuals, at this point in time a lot of people are uncomfortable with the state of Illinois and conceal and carry for many reasons."

Fee, 57, of Aurora, said she supports a citizen's right to carry a weapon for personal protection, especially after she walked in on someone robbing her home two years ago.

"I do support concealed carry. I have my FOID card; my husband is a hunter; we're a military family," Fee said. "I am in favor of the Constitution of the United States and I live by that."

In an endorsement interview with the Daily Herald, Fee criticized Kifowit for sending an advertisement with Fee's photo and an image of an assault weapon.

"I'm highly insulted that somebody would say I'm in favor of assault weapons," said Fee, who added she would support a ban on such weapons. "They shouldn't be on the streets."

Kifowit said her campaign sent the mailer Fee referenced. She said she supports "reasonable gun control" and a ban on military-style assault weapons.

"The point is that military assault weapons have no place in our society," Kifowit said. "I do support the Second Amendment, but I do support reasonable gun control as well."

Voters will choose between Kifowit, an Aurora alderman and substitute teacher, and Fee, a homemaker and community volunteer, in the Nov. 6 election to represent the 84th District, which includes parts of Aurora, Naperville, Montgomery, Oswego and Boulder Hill.

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