Antigay Group Tries to Intervene in Lambda Legal Marriage Case
An Illinois court heard arguments today regarding an attempt by the Illinois Family Institute to join Lambda Legal’s case seeking the freedom to marry for same-sex couples in Illinois.
The Court decided to continue the motion pending similar requests from two Illinois churches. The next hearing date is set for November 7.
“We have behind us long-standing precedent in Illinois, which states that someone who wants to intervene in another person’s lawsuit must show more than an ideological interest or a desire to see a law upheld,” says Camilla Taylor, Marriage Project Director for Lambda Legal. “The IFI has a right to hold and express its extremist views about lesbian and gay people on its own time but that does not mean it has a right to do so as a party in someone else’s lawsuit.”
Lambda Legal and the ACLU of Illinois have each filed lawsuits representing a total of 25 same-sex couples seeking the freedom to marry in Illinois. The Illinois Attorney General's office filed papers agreeing that the ban on marriage for same-sex couples is unconstitutional. The Cook County Clerk and State's Attorney also agree that the marriage ban is unconstitutional.
After two County Clerks moved to intervene, promising a vigorous defense of the marriage ban, the Court entered an unopposed order permitting them to intervene as defendants.
Soon after, the Alliance Defending Freedom, an Arizona-based antigay group, moved to intervene on behalf of the Illinois Family Institute (IFI), an organization dedicated to advancing the view that gay people are sinful. IFI has a long history of making derogatory and untruthful statements about lesbian and gay people. Lambda Legal and the ACLU of Illinois have opposed IFI's efforts to intervene.
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