Illinois GOP Chairman Calling On Lawmakers To Support Marriage Equality
The bill to legalize marriage equality in Illinois is tangled up in technical red tape at the moment and won't be discussed until tomorrow, which gives Pat Brady, chairman of the state's Republican Party, more time to call up Republican lawmakers and push them to vote yes on allowing same-sex couples to tie the knot. That's precisely what he did today, because, like so most people in Illinois, Brady thinks the Republicans need to wake up and smell reality.
"I think it's time for people to support this," he said.
"More and more Americans understand that if two people want to make a lifelong commitment to each other, government should not stand in their way," he said, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. "Giving gay and lesbian couples the freedom to get married honors the best conservative principles. It strengthens families and reinforces a key Republican value - that the law should treat all citizens equally."
Got that? "Honors the best conservative principles... Strengthens families." Incredible language from a Republican leader.
And to religious conservatives balking at equality, Brady reassured them, "Importantly, the pending legislation would protect the freedom of religion. No church or religious organization would ever be required to perform a union with which it disagrees."
Elsewhere in Illinois, Modern Family actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon met this morning to put the finishing touches on Ferguson and fiance Justin Mikita's "Bow Tie Lobby Day," during which lawmakers and voters are supposed to wear a bow tie to show their support.
The Chicago Tribune reports on the actor's comments raising kids with Mikita and how Modern Family helped move the LGBT conversation forward and wh:
"I'm looking forward to raising a family with Justin and having our kids grow up in an equal America. I had a hard time coming out and certainly had struggles with my parents. … If the 12-year-old me had been able to turn on the TV and see a sitting president say he supports marriage equality, it would have made all the difference for me and certainly given me a lot of hope," Ferguson said.
Modern Family's popularity and presence in American homes has also helped the issue of marriage equality forward, Ferguson said.
"I think it's a bit like a Trojan horse. A lot of people who were not comfortable with marriage equality … turn on the television and see a show that has a lot of different families in it — and one of those families just happens to be gay. They're realizing they have a great time watching the show, then they're watching a gay couple that's having a lot of the same problems and issues they have. They realize 'Oh they’re not so different from me.' And at that point, we're in their living rooms," he said.