Illinois Lawmakers OK Gay Marriage

Governor has promised to sign measure into law

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Nov 5, 2013 5:46 PM CST

(Newser) – Gay marriage won yet another big fight tonight, as state lawmakers in Illinois gave their blessing, reports the Chicago Tribune. Gov. Pat Quinn has promised to sign the measure into law, which would make Illinois the 15th state to legalize same-sex marriage. DC also allows it. The first weddings in Illinois could take place in June, reports AP. Today's decisive vote came in the state House, which voted 61-54 in favor. It needed 60 to pass. “This is huge,” tweeted a former state resident, Barack Obama, as noted by the Chicago Sun-Times. “The Illinois House just passed marriage equality.”

Rep. Greg Harris, a Chicago Democrat, sponsored the bill and got mobbed by well-wishers afterward. “This bill will give them a better future,” he said of gay couples. "It’ll help families to show their love and commitment to each other and give all families a chance to live as full and equal citizens in the greatest country on the face of the earth.” A fellow Democrat, Rep. Mary Flowers, quoted the Bible in her bid to derail the legislation, adding that same-sex couples will "not be truly married in God's eyes."

Illinois Rep. Greg Harris, D-Chicago, left, is congratulated by lawmakers as gay marriage legislation passes on the House floor. Harris is openly gay.
Illinois Rep. Greg Harris, D-Chicago, left, is congratulated by lawmakers as gay marriage legislation passes on the House floor. Harris is openly gay.   (AP Photo/Seth Perlman)
Illinois Rep. Jay Hoffman, D-Belleville, right, congratulates Illinois Rep. Greg Harris, D-Chicago.
Illinois Rep. Jay Hoffman, D-Belleville, right, congratulates Illinois Rep. Greg Harris, D-Chicago.   (AP Photo/Seth Perlman)
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