Andy Thayer | Greg Harris | Illinois | News

Gay Activists to Picket IL Rep. Greg Harris, Demand Vote on Marriage Equality Bill: VIDEO


Illlinois LGBT activist group Gay Liberation Network is planning to picket Rep. Greg Harris, the lead sponsor of the marriage equality bill pending in the state legislature, on Saturday.

HarrisThe group's demand: "a party-line vote in favor of the bill by the Democratic Caucus, which holds a super-majority in Illinois's House of Representatives.

Writes the group, via press release:

GLN has been unique in publicly targeting the Democratic caucus, and especially House Speaker Mike Madigan (D-Chicago), for the failure of the bill, SB10, during the spring session and its uncertain fate in the current session.

"Because Speaker Madigan is so powerful, controlling access to jobs and contracts, most organizations are afraid to take him on and bluntly place blame where it's due," said GLN co-founder Andy Thayer. "Madigan controls the House as surely as Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel controls the City Council. When Madigan has wanted a party-line vote for far less popular measures, like gifts to the wealthy and well-connected, he's had no problem ramming them through the House. Like it or not, and mostly not, that's the way that politics works in this state."

Unlike pension "reform" and subsidies to already wealthy businesses that pay few, if any taxes, legislation favoring equal marriage rights in Illinois is overwhelmingly popular, with proponents outnumbering opponents by a nearly 2-to-1 margin, according to a February Crain's Chicago Business poll.

The protest is scheduled for 2 PM, Saturday, October 26 in front of Harris's district office, 1967 W. Montrose Avenue, Chicago.

Additionally, the Illinois Unites coalition has launched a three-day petition drive asking for a vote.

On Tuesday, after the March on Springfield, GLN unfurled a banner in the Capitol Building rotunda demanding SB10 be passed.

Watch their video, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. What do you expect Illinois sucks.... come to New England or Minnesota!!!

    Posted by: Ryan | Oct 25, 2013 5:42:46 PM

  2. Forgive me if I'm being ignorant here, but what, exactly, is the point of picketing the lead sponsor of the bill? Presumably he's already on board with it?

    Also, "Gay Liberation Network" is the worst name for such an organization.

    Posted by: TNardi | Oct 25, 2013 5:58:42 PM

  3. It really does not seem that Harris has been an effective leader - How is it that he has made zero headway since the spring? Truly embarrassing.

    Posted by: Greg | Oct 25, 2013 6:34:09 PM

  4. If legislators don't want to vote for it, they're not going to vote for it. Obviously, the reasons they didn't want to before are holding true now. It's unfortunate but it's becoming pretty obvious that it's litigation that will have to become the focus in Illinois, in bringing marriage equality to the state.

    Posted by: Francis #1 | Oct 25, 2013 6:53:34 PM

  5. since it looks like it's going to be the courts that decide this, all the more reason to force a vote and get the anti-gay dems on record for future primary challenges.

    Posted by: ed adams | Oct 25, 2013 7:01:50 PM

  6. There are more people to blame than Harris. The gay community and activists seem to be a large part of the problem too.

    Posted by: Malcolm | Oct 25, 2013 7:38:51 PM

  7. I would think that in a civil union state, like Illinois, the way to go now is through the courts, just like they did in New Jersey, with the post-DOMA argument that separate is clearly not equal.

    Posted by: Fox | Oct 25, 2013 8:30:56 PM

  8. It speaks volumes about the Democratic party in the state that they have a super majority in the legislature and can't pass same sex marriage (or deal with their pension crisis).

    Posted by: Perry | Oct 25, 2013 8:40:22 PM

  9. They'll vote in January, and we'll win.
    I'd be frustrated too, but it's only 3 months more.
    Soon, NOM/Bishop Paprocki/Cardinal George/et al, you will lose.

    Posted by: woody | Oct 25, 2013 8:48:12 PM

  10. Get them on the record.
    If they want to be bigots,let them do it like they did in RI and NY and let the voters decide if they should stay.

    Posted by: Kevin | Oct 25, 2013 8:51:06 PM

  11. The whole thing will become moot since the "activist judges" soon will do it for them.

    Posted by: simon | Oct 25, 2013 10:26:49 PM

  12. They are milking the rubes for cash. Harris is having a fund raiser this week. You know. Just one more term and we're almost there. For those out of state, they don't want to have a vote until AFTER the filing deadline for the next primary. Which means not this year. Too much push back from Catholic Church and Black Pastors. Sadly there are no leaders in government. Just bad employees with sense of entitlement. What's worse is the family dynasty problem. Too many legacy Dems..and yes that includes Deb Mell.

    Posted by: stevetalbert | Oct 26, 2013 8:17:13 AM

  13. FYI. . The US has 3 EQUAL branches of government. Civil rights should be decided by the courts.

    Posted by: stevetalbert | Oct 26, 2013 8:20:46 AM

  14. There are bad leaders because of the voters (who keep voting for the same boobs: out of touch social conservatives and big spendign liberals). They didn't just magically show up in office.

    Posted by: Perry | Oct 26, 2013 11:06:25 AM

  15. This is so embarrassing. A perfect illustration as to the problem in Illinois. Nobody is singing off the same sheet. No unified strategy, and too many seeking "credit" and casting blame.

    The Democrat supermajorities will do nothing in veto session. I think only the courts can make something happen in Illinois.

    Posted by: LincolnLounger | Oct 26, 2013 1:18:28 PM

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