Illinois lawmakers could consider a measure to legalize gay marriage in January. (WJBC file photo)
By Jim Anderson
CHICAGO - The sponsors of same-sex marriage in Illinois say they’ll push for a vote in January.
Saying they’re “within striking distance,” they say they’ll push for a vote in the Lame Duck session in the first week of January on H.B. 5710. Camilla Taylor, Marriage Project director for the group Lambda Legal, says she expects it to pass.
“We have all the momentum on our side, as we’ve recently won four separate votes in the last election in four different states, on the subject of marriage and the freedom to marry for same-sex couples, and we’re confident that we can get the support that we need in the Illinois Legislature,” she said.
Lambda Legal is also attempting to bring about same-sex marriage via litigation, in the case Darby vs. Orr.
State Rep. Greg Harris (D-Chicago) says his informal surveys of fellow legislators show that opposition to the idea has dropped dramatically since the November election, but he won’t say exactly how many votes he thinks he has. The other sponsor is State Sen. Heather Steans (D-Chicago).
David E. Smith of the Illinois Family Institute, which opposes the proposal, told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that the matter shouldn’t be decided in the Lame Duck session.
“The people of the state of Illinois shouldn’t be represented by people who are lame ducks,” he said. “Illinois has got so many problems . . . yet they’re trying to push through this social issue.”