Deborah Mell | Gay Marriage | Illinois | News

Watch: Rep. Deb Mell Announces Engagement on Illinois House Floor


Yesterday I posted that Illinois Rep. Deb Mell would be announcing her engagement to her partner Christin Baker on the floor of the Illinois House. She did so.

Dmell The Chicago Tribune reports:

"Mell, the daughter of Ald. Richard Mell, 33rd, and sister of former Illinois first lady Patti Blagojevich, put a spotlight on her personal life Wednesday in an effort to start changing the minds of her legislative colleagues. Joined by her partner of six years, Christin Baker, Mell said she likely will go to Iowa to state her vows. 'I am aware that our governor and many of you on both sides of the aisle do not consider me equal to you and our relationship equal to the relationship you share with your spouse,' Mell, a Chicago Democrat, told her colleagues Wednesday. 'I think we are more alike than we are different.' Legislation to legalize civil unions passed a House committee nearly a year ago, but the sponsor, Rep. Greg Harris, D-Chicago, said he's still trying to muster the 60 votes needed to send it to the Senate. Illinois has been slow in approving gay rights measures — it took more than 30 years to win approval of a law outlawing discrimination against gays and lesbians by landlords, real estate agents, employers and lenders. Then- Gov. Rod Blagojevich, Mell's brother-in-law, signed that bill in 2005."

Only one Republican, Rep. Mark Beaubien, stood and applauded to acknowledge Mell's engagement.


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  1. good for her :)

    Posted by: neverstops | Apr 29, 2010 9:14:01 AM

  2. Congratulations to Mell and her future bride. May you two live long, happy and healthy lives together.

    On a sour note, shame on the Republicans for not applauding (excluding Mr. Beubien). Even if they're personally opposed to gay marriage, it's incredibly disrespectful for them to remain quiet as their colleague announces something so important and meaningful.

    I might not be a fan of the modern Catholic Church, but I'm certainly going to congratulate a friend if their child is christened. It's basic human kindness and respect.

    I'll admit it. I've got conservative friends. I have evangelical Christian friends. I'm even still in touch with a casual friend from college that currently works for Focus on the Family. (You don't want to know the arguments we've gotten into, heh.)

    If I were to get engaged, every single one of them would congratulate me. Even the super nutty religious ones. I've got to think it's an age thing. I'm in my early twenties, as are most my friends.

    Maybe some of the rhetoric is losing it's sting, and people are slowly learning basic human compassion, even if our personal moral and spiritual opinions vary.

    In thirty years, homophobes like John McCain and George Bush will have disappeared into the night. Replacing them will be a generation of people who get it.

    They can't even convince their own children to follow their bigotry. Megan McCain is outspoken in her LGBT support (If only she wasn't so bad on other issues), and when Jenna Bush was on Ellen, she seemed to be thrilled to be hanging out with the big scary lesbian talk show host.

    Our time is coming, Rep. Dell. Your old straight white male colleagues are desperate to hold onto their control and they will do awful things to keep their power, but things are changing.

    As they should.

    Posted by: Aaron Rowland | Apr 29, 2010 10:27:29 AM

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