Illinois State Senator Heather Steans today introduced a marriage equality bill in the Illinois Senate:
"The bill would provide for state recognition of same-sex marriage,
while ensuing that religious institutions are not required to perform
any marriages that inconsistent with their religious practices. This
is a companion bill to the one introduced in the State House of
Representatives by Representative Greg Harris, HB178. The House bill
is co-sponsored by Representatives Deb Mell, Sara Feigenholtz,
Constance Howard, Harry Osterman and John Fritchey. Equality Illinois
applauds the sponsoring legislators for their leadership."
Said Bernard Cherkasov, Chief Executive Officer of Equality Illinois: "This is not an issue of sacred versus secular – there are plenty of
synagogues and churches that both recognize and perform same-sex
marriages. Rather, marriage is a civil right – plain and
simple. The state cannot have a civil institution of marriage – with
its plethora of benefits, rights, and responsibilities – and exclude
from it an entire class of citizens."