Wednesday, February 27, 2013

IL Marriage Bill Passes 6-5 To Reach House Floor

Hmmmm! By an uncomfortably close vote of 6-5 a marriage equality bill passed a the Illinois House Executive Committee and will next be heard on the House Floor. Although Democrats had a 7-5 majority on the committee, one Democrat, Eddie Lee Jackson, Sr. voted against the bill while every other Democratic member voted for the bill and every Republican bill voted against it.

Windy City Times reports:
Openly gay bill sponsor Rep. Greg Harris started off the hearing, discussing the many ways that civil unions have fallen short for LGBT couples. He noted that earlier in the day, top U.S. Republicans had signed onto a brief urging the Supreme Court to strike down of the federal Defense of Marriage Act, which bans the recognition of same-sex marriages. 
Harris drove home exemptions in the bill for religious institutions.

Testifying was Rev. B. Herbert Martin of the Progressive Community Church. He said the bill lived up to its name by protecting religious freedom.

The measure is expected to face its toughest challenge on the House floor, its last hurdle before it is sent to Gov. Pat Quinn's desk. Quinn strongly supports the measure.
It should be noted that Democrats have a 71-47 majority in the 118 member house, which needs 60 votes to pass. It is expected that there will be some Republicans voting in favor of the bill.

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