Illinois Takes Step Toward Gay Marriage

Legislators in support of same-sex marriage have a long way to go, but the ball is rolling.

A same-sex marriage bill may be voted on in the Illinois Senate as early as Valentine’s Day, the Chicago Tribune reports.

Sen. Heather Seans, D-Chicago, sponsored the bill in last month’s lame duck session, but it took until Tuesday for it to advance past committee action in a 9-5 vote, according to the report.

The bill will now go to floor process where the entire Senate will consider its passage. Should it make it through the Senate readings, it will go before the House, where the process will be repeated. If it passes the House—a big "if," according to the Tribune—it then goes up for consideration by Governor Pat Quinn.

Quinn recently told the Tribune he completely supports same-sex marriage.

For more, read the Chicago Tribune report.

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Ron Burgandy February 17, 2013 at 05:07 AM
Is this still an issue? What year is it people? There are bigger fish to fry than worrying about who is married to whom. How about finding a pension system solution or getting the state out of debt. These issues affect every IL resident. This issue only affects a small minority of the population. The GOP must drop its battle with homosexual residents and get to work fixing the state. As a matter of fact if you can't say an issue affects 100% of the population then the state shouldn’t really legislate about it. Just my two cents...
Dan Johnson February 26, 2013 at 04:42 PM
Most issues don't affect 100% of the population equally. One role of government has always been to protect the interests and equal rights of those most easily harmed. It is usually the majority inflicting harm on a minority, as is the case here, where equal treatment under the law is being denied. Our founding fathers were well aware of the atrocities majorities had inflicted on minorities, and that is why they established our country on the principals of equality and freedom, and established a representative constitutional republic, not a direct democracy or a theocracy. They tried to provide a structure to prevent majorities from taking away or restricting the equal rights of minorities. That is why we have a constitution that requires equal treatment for all persons. James Madison wrote: “It is of great importance in a republic not only to guard the society against the oppression of its rulers, but to guard one part of the society against the injustice of the other part … If a majority be united by a common interest, the rights of the minority will be insecure.”
Dan Johnson February 26, 2013 at 04:49 PM
Gay people are already forming families. Laws that deny equality to those families will not stop them from forming. So the question then becomes, are we going to encourage strong, committed relationships around the shared values of family, fidelity, and responsibility, with the help of friends, family, and the government, or is it in the best interest of society to make laws that attack and demean such relationships, causing needless harm to those couples and their children? The values of love, commitment, family, and community are not a threat. It is the values of hate, violence, intimidation, and control, that we need to work against. As Justice Kennedy wrote about the founding fathers: "They knew times can blind us to certain truths and later generations can see that laws once thought necessary and proper in fact serve only to oppress." Laws that treat gay people differently than straight people are laws that only serve to oppress. It is time to overcome the prejudices we were taught as children and stop harming our neighbors and even family members by maintaining laws that dehumanize and discriminate against gay citizens. It is time to stop stalling the inevitable, pass equal rights legislation, and move on to issues that affect everyone.


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