Gay marriage supporters are lobbying for the state of Illinois to become the next state to legalize same-sex marriage. According to the Chicago Tribune on October 22, hundreds of advocates turned out for a rally in the state Capitol in hopes of persuading lawmakers to finally vote in favor of a proposal that have been stalled for months.
Gay rights organizations have turned up efforts ever since the a gay marriage bill passed by the Senate was turned down by the House. If gay marriage was to by passed by the house, Governor Pat Quinn promised to sign the bill. That is just how close the state of Illinois is and advocates are hopeful that the legalization of gay marriage in the neighboring state of Minnesota and also the historic Supreme Court ruling striking down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) has shifted momentum and provided a change in opinion amongst lawmakers who return for the start of the fall veto session.
The rally in Springfield involved a marched around the Capitol followed by inspiring speeches by both Gov. Quinn and U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin.
Quinn told supporters that "the time for marriage equality has come" and that "this is our moment" for the state of Illinois.
Durbin followed by asking lawmakers to "reject the values of division and intolerance.'
But it wasn't just Democrats who showed up at the rally. Republican Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka declared gay marriage as a part of history and wants the state to "be a part of it."
The issue of same-sex marriage in the state of Illinois simply comes down to timing. Supporters feel like now is the time because of a shift in public opinion and they want to ride momentum, but some lawmakers want to delay the vote until after January when they know who they will running against for re-election. Waiting till after January can also make it easier to pass the bill because the amount of votes needed to pass the measure will drop back to 60 as opposed to the 71 needed prior to January.
Religious organizations opposed to gay marriage in the state argue that legalizing it would lead to the unraveling of the traditional building blocks of society.