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Second GOP House Lawmaker in Illinois Announces Support for Marriage Equality as NOM Repeats Its Threats

Marriage equality will heat up once again in Illinois this week as lawmakers return to Springfield from a two-week break, and the Chicago Tribune reports that State Rep. Ed Sullivan Jr. of Mundelein has announced he'll back the bill, becoming the second House lawmaker to do so:

SullivanSullivan, who is chairman of the House Republican campaign organization, said his decision to back same-sex marriage represented a personal and family evolution on the issue. Previously an opponent of civil unions, Sullivan told the Tribune that his mother-in-law, who lives in the southwest suburbs, has been in a same-sex relationship.

"The first reaction from people might be, 'Well he might be voting for that just because of his mother-in-law,'" Sullivan said. "The reality is, because my mother-in-law is gay, I have more of an understanding and familiarity with same-sex couples."

A state representative since 2003, Sullivan and state Rep. Ron Sandack of Downers Grove are the only House Republicans to publicly announce their backing of the same-sex marriage bill, which already passed the state Senate. With House lawmakers returning to Springfield on Monday after a two-week break, supporters of the measure have said they were within a dozen votes of the 60 needed to pass it.

Sullivan says he thinks more Republicans are set to declare their support.

"There is tremendous momentum leading up to this vote. I think we're very close," he said. "There's many of my colleagues that have talked about this, that have said it's the right thing to do."

The Senate has already passed the bill. Before the House took recess, vote counts had indicated that marriage equality supporters still had some work to do.

Brian_brownMeanwhile, NOM is rattling its sabre again, reiterating its pledge to spend $250K to defeat GOP legislators who support same-sex marriage:

"Any Republican in Illinois who betrays the cause of marriage will be casting a career-ending vote and will be held accountable to their constituents," said Brian Brown, NOM's president. "We will spend whatever it takes—hundreds of thousands of dollars if necessary—to remove them from office, just as we did three of the four turncoat Republican state Senators in New York who were responsible for gay 'marriage' passing there. We will not hesitate to support pro-family Democrats to replace them, as our record in New York proves."

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Comments

  1. Unfortunately, the force of fear have deep pockets. It is good to hear of a legislator, however, who is willing to do what is right rather then what will garner the most votes.

    Posted by: Alex Parrish | Apr 8, 2013 12:25:03 PM


  2. I thought NOM were practically broke.

    Posted by: Sylvatica | Apr 8, 2013 12:41:11 PM


  3. NOM= Need of Money

    Posted by: anthony | Apr 8, 2013 12:49:39 PM


  4. "Hundreds of thousands of dollars"? What happened to those millions, Brian?

    Posted by: Hunter | Apr 8, 2013 12:52:18 PM


  5. according to illinois political blogs (capitol fax, illinois observer), NOM has been paying the african american ministers (a thousand bucks here, three thousand there, etc.) who've come out against SSM.

    Posted by: james | Apr 8, 2013 1:28:51 PM


  6. "I thought NOM were practically broke."

    They have a few wealthy backers who will contribute when necessary. Obviously, those backers prefer it if other parties subsidize NOM when necessary.

    Posted by: Nat | Apr 8, 2013 1:43:53 PM


  7. That's right Brian, get those Republicans out of office so that more Democrats can be elected! That will work miracles for stopping marriage equality. ;-)

    Posted by: Howard | Apr 8, 2013 1:47:59 PM


  8. Congratulations Mr Sullivan. I'm sure holiday dinners at the Sullivan household will be happier occasions now.

    Posted by: andrew | Apr 8, 2013 1:50:38 PM


  9. I wonder if these two Republican House members would have been willing to publicly announce their support of the bill if they had not seen passage as likely (I am noting that as a possibly hopeful indicator). Based on the publicly reported analyses of votes in the Illinois House released last month, it strikes me that these are some of the key votes:

    • Emily McAsey (D-85): voted for civil unions - CHICAGO MAGAZINE ANALYSIS HAS HER AS A LIKELY YES, NOT EVEN A TOSS UP, APPARENTLY SOLELY ON THE BASIS OF HER CU VOTE, BUT CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS HAS HER AS A SHAKY NO BECAUSE SHE RESPONDED TO A QUESTIONNAIRE BY SAYING THAT MARRIAGE EQUALITY DOES NOT APPEAR TO BE A PRIORITY FOR VOTERS AND HER FOCUS IS ELSEWHERE. SHE FROM LOYOLA CHICAGO LAW AND WORKED AS A CRIMINAL PROSECUTOR AND PUBLIC SCHOOL TEACHER. HER DISTRICT IS OUTSIDE OF CHICAGO. HERS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=1956

    • Fred Crespo (D-44): voted for civil unions - VERY SIMILAR TO MCASEY ABOVE: CHICAGO MAGAZINE ANALYSIS HAS HIM AS A LIKELY YES, NOT EVEN A TOSS UP, APPARENTLY SOLELY ON THE BASIS OF HIS CU VOTE, BUT CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS HAS HIM AS A SHAKY NO BECAUSE HE WAS NOTE ENDORSED BY EQUALITY ILLINOIS LAST YEAR AND BECAUSE HE RESPONDED TO A QUESTIONNAIRE BY SAYING THAT HE SUPPORTS CIVIL RIGHTS FOR ALL BUT HIS CONSTITUENTS ARE MORE CONCERNED ABOUT OTHER ISSUES AND HE FEELS HE NEEDS TO DIRECT HIS EFFORTS TO THEIR CONCERNS. A GRADUATE OF LOYOLA CHICAGO. HIS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=1943

    • Kathleen Willis (D-77): Willis defeated incumbent Paul Saviano, a likely yes vote, in this past election, mostly with the help of Speaker Madigan. She may owe him a favor. - CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS SEES HER AS A SHAKY NO BUT NOTES THAT HER POSITION IS NOT WIDELY KNOWN AND THAT SHE DEFEATED INCUMBENT REPUBLICAN AND EQUALITY ILLINOIS-ENDORSED PAUL SAVIANO LAST YEAR. HERS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=2052

    • Natalie Manley (D-98): Manley avoided answering a question about this during the most recent election. - CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS DESCRIBES HER AS A SHAKY NO, NOTING THAT HER VIEWS ON THE ISSUE HAVE NOT BEEN WIDELY PUBLICIZED, SHE DODGED THE ISSUE ON A QUESTIONNAIRE AND SHE WAS NOT ENDORSED BY EQUALITY ILLINOIS LAST YEAR. SHE REPRESENTS A DISTRICT OUTSIDE OF CHICAGO. SHE IS A CPA AND A GRAD OF JOLIET JUNIOR COLLEAGE AND U OF ST. FRANCIS. SHE IS PRESIDENT OF A CONDO ASS'N AND A UNITED WAY VOLUNTEER. HERS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=2056

    • Rita Mayfield (D-60): Mayfield voted present on civil unions, and has said she has mixed emotions on the issue. - CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS SEES HER AS A SHAKY NO, INDICATING THAT SHE SAYS THAT SHE WANTS TO VOTE YES BUT THAT HER CONSTITUENTS HAVE PRESSED HER TO VOTE NO AND THAT, AT A FORUM SHE HELD ON THE ISSUE, MOST IN ATTENDANCE PRESSED HER TO VOTE NO. SHE HAS A B.S. IN COMPUTER SCIENCE FROM COLUMBIA COLLEGE AND AN M.S. FROM BENEDICTINE U AND IS A FORMER V.P. OF A BOARD OF ED AND A MEMBER OF A SCHOOLS FOUNDATION BOARD AN A VOLUNTEER FOR HABITAT FOR HUMANITY. HERS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=1969

    • Stephanie A. Kifowit (D-84): Kifowit expressed support for civil unions and said she believes “everyone should enjoy the same civil rights.” - CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS DESCRIBES HER AS A SHAKY NO, CITING A QUESTIONNAIRE IN WHICH SHE INDICATED THAT EVERYONE SHOULD HAVE THE SAME RIGHTS BUT THAT SHE THOUGHT THAT THE INTENT BEHIND THE CUs LAW WAS TO PROVIDE FOR JUST THAT AND NOTING THAT SHE WAS NOT ENDORSED BY EQUALITY ILLINOIS. SHE REPRESENTS A DISTRICT OUTSIDE OF CHICAGO AND WAS A MARINE, A SUBSTITUTE TEACHER AND REGISTERED FINANCIAL ADVISOR. SHE GRADUATED FROM NORTHERN ILLINOIS U AND IS A MEMBER OF THE AMERICAN LEGION AND VARIOUS VETS ORGS AND HE LOCAL CHAMBER OF COMMERCE. HERS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=2054

    • Anthony DeLuca (D-80): He voted for civil unions and was endorsed by EQIL, but two years ago he said he would be a no vote on an eventual bill. - CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS HAS HIM AS A SHAKY NO, CITING THE SAME FACTORS AS CHICAGO MAGAZINE. DIRECTOR OF OPS AT FAMILY-OWNED BUSINESS FOR YEARS AND LOCAL MAYOR AND DIRECTOR OF SMALL FRY BASKETBALL LEAGUE. GRADUATE OF ELMHURST COLLEGE. HIS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=1965

    • Jack D. Franks (D-63): Franks, who voted for civil unions, refused to give his opinion in January, but said the state should concentrate on pensions first. - CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS SEES HIM AS A SHAKY NO, CITING AN INTERVIEW OF AN UNSPECIFIED DATE IN WHICH HE STATED HIS OPPOSITION TO MARRIAGE EQUALITY, THE FACT THAT HE WASN'T ENDORSED BY EQUALITY ILLINOIS LAST YEAR AND A RECENT PROTEST BY HATERS DIRECTED AT HIM. REPRESENTS DISTRICT OUTSIDE OF CHICAGO. GRAD OF UW, MADISON AND AMERICAN U WASHINGTON COLLEGE OF LAW AND A LAWYER AND MEMBER OF SEVERAL CHAMBERS OF COMMERCE. HIS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=1832

    Posted by: Patric | Apr 8, 2013 2:25:59 PM


  10. I wonder if these two Republican House members would have been willing to publicly announce their support of the bill if they had not seen passage as likely (I am noting that as a possibly hopeful indicator). Based on the publicly reported analyses of votes in the Illinois House released last month, it strikes me that these are some of the key votes:

    • Emily McAsey (D-85): voted for civil unions - CHICAGO MAGAZINE ANALYSIS HAS HER AS A LIKELY YES, NOT EVEN A TOSS UP, APPARENTLY SOLELY ON THE BASIS OF HER CU VOTE, BUT CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS HAS HER AS A SHAKY NO BECAUSE SHE RESPONDED TO A QUESTIONNAIRE BY SAYING THAT MARRIAGE EQUALITY DOES NOT APPEAR TO BE A PRIORITY FOR VOTERS AND HER FOCUS IS ELSEWHERE. SHE FROM LOYOLA CHICAGO LAW AND WORKED AS A CRIMINAL PROSECUTOR AND PUBLIC SCHOOL TEACHER. HER DISTRICT IS OUTSIDE OF CHICAGO. HERS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=1956

    • Fred Crespo (D-44): voted for civil unions - VERY SIMILAR TO MCASEY ABOVE: CHICAGO MAGAZINE ANALYSIS HAS HIM AS A LIKELY YES, NOT EVEN A TOSS UP, APPARENTLY SOLELY ON THE BASIS OF HIS CU VOTE, BUT CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS HAS HIM AS A SHAKY NO BECAUSE HE WAS NOTE ENDORSED BY EQUALITY ILLINOIS LAST YEAR AND BECAUSE HE RESPONDED TO A QUESTIONNAIRE BY SAYING THAT HE SUPPORTS CIVIL RIGHTS FOR ALL BUT HIS CONSTITUENTS ARE MORE CONCERNED ABOUT OTHER ISSUES AND HE FEELS HE NEEDS TO DIRECT HIS EFFORTS TO THEIR CONCERNS. A GRADUATE OF LOYOLA CHICAGO. HIS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=1943

    • Kathleen Willis (D-77): Willis defeated incumbent Paul Saviano, a likely yes vote, in this past election, mostly with the help of Speaker Madigan. She may owe him a favor. - CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS SEES HER AS A SHAKY NO BUT NOTES THAT HER POSITION IS NOT WIDELY KNOWN AND THAT SHE DEFEATED INCUMBENT REPUBLICAN AND EQUALITY ILLINOIS-ENDORSED PAUL SAVIANO LAST YEAR. HERS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=2052

    • Natalie Manley (D-98): Manley avoided answering a question about this during the most recent election. - CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS DESCRIBES HER AS A SHAKY NO, NOTING THAT HER VIEWS ON THE ISSUE HAVE NOT BEEN WIDELY PUBLICIZED, SHE DODGED THE ISSUE ON A QUESTIONNAIRE AND SHE WAS NOT ENDORSED BY EQUALITY ILLINOIS LAST YEAR. SHE REPRESENTS A DISTRICT OUTSIDE OF CHICAGO. SHE IS A CPA AND A GRAD OF JOLIET JUNIOR COLLEAGE AND U OF ST. FRANCIS. SHE IS PRESIDENT OF A CONDO ASS'N AND A UNITED WAY VOLUNTEER. HERS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=2056

    • Rita Mayfield (D-60): Mayfield voted present on civil unions, and has said she has mixed emotions on the issue. - CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS SEES HER AS A SHAKY NO, INDICATING THAT SHE SAYS THAT SHE WANTS TO VOTE YES BUT THAT HER CONSTITUENTS HAVE PRESSED HER TO VOTE NO AND THAT, AT A FORUM SHE HELD ON THE ISSUE, MOST IN ATTENDANCE PRESSED HER TO VOTE NO. SHE HAS A B.S. IN COMPUTER SCIENCE FROM COLUMBIA COLLEGE AND AN M.S. FROM BENEDICTINE U AND IS A FORMER V.P. OF A BOARD OF ED AND A MEMBER OF A SCHOOLS FOUNDATION BOARD AN A VOLUNTEER FOR HABITAT FOR HUMANITY. HERS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=1969

    • Stephanie A. Kifowit (D-84): Kifowit expressed support for civil unions and said she believes “everyone should enjoy the same civil rights.” - CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS DESCRIBES HER AS A SHAKY NO, CITING A QUESTIONNAIRE IN WHICH SHE INDICATED THAT EVERYONE SHOULD HAVE THE SAME RIGHTS BUT THAT SHE THOUGHT THAT THE INTENT BEHIND THE CUs LAW WAS TO PROVIDE FOR JUST THAT AND NOTING THAT SHE WAS NOT ENDORSED BY EQUALITY ILLINOIS. SHE REPRESENTS A DISTRICT OUTSIDE OF CHICAGO AND WAS A MARINE, A SUBSTITUTE TEACHER AND REGISTERED FINANCIAL ADVISOR. SHE GRADUATED FROM NORTHERN ILLINOIS U AND IS A MEMBER OF THE AMERICAN LEGION AND VARIOUS VETS ORGS AND HE LOCAL CHAMBER OF COMMERCE. HERS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=2054

    • Anthony DeLuca (D-80): He voted for civil unions and was endorsed by EQIL, but two years ago he said he would be a no vote on an eventual bill. - CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS HAS HIM AS A SHAKY NO, CITING THE SAME FACTORS AS CHICAGO MAGAZINE. DIRECTOR OF OPS AT FAMILY-OWNED BUSINESS FOR YEARS AND LOCAL MAYOR AND DIRECTOR OF SMALL FRY BASKETBALL LEAGUE. GRADUATE OF ELMHURST COLLEGE. HIS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=1965

    • Jack D. Franks (D-63): Franks, who voted for civil unions, refused to give his opinion in January, but said the state should concentrate on pensions first. - CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS SEES HIM AS A SHAKY NO, CITING AN INTERVIEW OF AN UNSPECIFIED DATE IN WHICH HE STATED HIS OPPOSITION TO MARRIAGE EQUALITY, THE FACT THAT HE WASN'T ENDORSED BY EQUALITY ILLINOIS LAST YEAR AND A RECENT PROTEST BY HATERS DIRECTED AT HIM. REPRESENTS DISTRICT OUTSIDE OF CHICAGO. GRAD OF UW, MADISON AND AMERICAN U WASHINGTON COLLEGE OF LAW AND A LAWYER AND MEMBER OF SEVERAL CHAMBERS OF COMMERCE. HIS WOULD APPEAR TO BE A PARTICULARLY SIGNIFICANT VOTE. http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?GA=98&MemberID=1832

    Posted by: Patric | Apr 8, 2013 2:26:12 PM


  11. I really wonder why I voluntarily read the comments section of the NOMblog. If you want crazier and more bigoted give them a shot. I had no idea that I was subverting the christian religion, and that was a first step to a communist regime that would punish us before the christians. I can only assume the take away is, it's really not so bad so bad under our restrictions, right!? Gotta protect the natural order...favorite argument was if Virginia no longer allows faith based adoption agencies to reject same sex couples based on their religious grounds...then well that's no different than making a vegetarian couple buy meat for their adopted child. Mind you these people never really read the proposals they are against.

    Posted by: James | Apr 8, 2013 4:25:25 PM


  12. I really wonder why I voluntarily read the comments section of the NOMblog. If you want crazier and more bigoted give them a shot. I had no idea that I was subverting the christian religion, and that was a first step to a communist regime that would punish us before the christians. I can only assume the take away is, it's really not so bad so bad under our restrictions, right!? Gotta protect the natural order...favorite argument was if Virginia no longer allows faith based adoption agencies to reject same sex couples based on their religious grounds...then well that's no different than making a vegetarian couple buy meat for their adopted child. Mind you these people never really read the proposals they are against.

    Posted by: James | Apr 8, 2013 4:25:34 PM


  13. I really wonder why I voluntarily read the comments section of the NOMblog. If you want crazier and more bigoted give them a shot. I had no idea that I was subverting the christian religion, and that was a first step to a communist regime that would punish us before the christians. I can only assume the take away is, it's really not so bad so bad under our restrictions, right!? Gotta protect the natural order...favorite argument was if Virginia no longer allows faith based adoption agencies to reject same sex couples based on their religious grounds...then well that's no different than making a vegetarian couple buy meat for their adopted child. Mind you these people never really read the proposals they are against.

    Posted by: James | Apr 8, 2013 4:25:43 PM


  14. This is awesome! Harvey Milk was right...the more people who come out, the more people will realize that homophobia is stupid.

    Posted by: MuscleModelBlog.com | Apr 8, 2013 5:20:28 PM


  15. Am I missing something or are they lying through their teeth? I thought one of those pro-equality New York Republican Senators was booted out of office in place of a pro-equality Democrat, and then another was retiring anyway. So maybe they got 1 victory out of the 4? Certainly not 3 out of 4!

    Posted by: Bill S. | Apr 8, 2013 5:27:57 PM


  16. there should be a word limit (and multi-posting limit) on replies.

    Posted by: james | Apr 8, 2013 8:17:06 PM


  17. NOM and its empty threats. Their threats are empty and meaningless if NOM is ignored. Men and women of integrity love what is right over how long their political careers last. They serve at the whim and will of the voters of the day and there is always the chance of being voted out no matter what position they take. That was so before NOM came into being and that will be so after NOM is defunct. So to hell with NOM and its efforts at intimidation. Prediction, 20 more defeats for NOM and its financial backers will abandon it as a lost cause. NOM is racking up defeats every year in the USA.
    My state Maryland which gained marriage equality in 2013 after the failed effort in 2011 in the Maryland legislature, and after the loss in court to gain such in 2007 and Maine gaining equality in 2012 by the same voter referendum tool instead for marriage equality after that loss of equality by voter referendum in 2009
    are proof that NOM's wins can be undone and defeats handed to NOM by the voters themselves. One day, I may marry another man in Maryland and that will be for me a mixed day. A day of quiet, sweet revenge against NOM, his and mine own special day united as a married couple. Full of love and joy for each other. Knowing that the voters of my own state turned NOM away so to speak, and sent it out of the state of Maryland's internal affairs.

    Posted by: Mousemess | Apr 9, 2013 12:56:34 AM


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