Rahm Emanuel Signs Marriage Petition calling for the Freedom to Marry in Illinois
(Chicago, IL,January 16, 2013) - Today Lambda Legal announced that Rahm Emanuel has signed the ILove Marriage Petition. Lambda Legal released the following statement from James L. Bennett, Regional Director for the Midwest Regional Office of Lambda Legal:
"Mayor Emanuel has been on the forefront in advocating for the freedom to marry for same-sex couples in Illinois, we're very pleased that he's taken the step of signing the pledge to show his support for our efforts to bring marriage to Illinois.
"As proud Illinois Unites for Marriage coalition partners, we urge everyone in Illinois who supports our freedom to marry to join Mayor Emanuel and sign the pledge and learn what you can do to bring marriage to Illinois. Join the Illinois Unites Campaign - we all need to be involved as we move forward with our efforts in the Illinois Assembly to pass a marriage bill.
"These are exciting times in Illinois and the momentum is with us. Call your state representative and senator now and tell them to vote yes for marriage for same-sex couples - It's just time!"
Illinois Unites for Marriage Coalition brings together a diverse group of individuals and organizations from across Illinois, including business groups, labor, faith organizations, Republicans, Democrats and grassroots supporters.The coalition is being organized by Equality Illinois, Lambda Legal and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Illinois. Learn more here: http://www.illinoisunites.org/
On the first day of the legislative session, Representative Greg Harris and Senator Heather Steans wasted no time in pushing for the freedom to marry. The lawmakers introduced HB 110 and SB 110, the Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act.
On May 30, 2012, Lambda Legal and the ACLU of Illinois each filed lawsuits representing a total of 25 same-sex couples from across the state of Illinois seeking the freedom to marry. Two days later, the Illinois Attorney General's office filed papers agreeing that barring same-sex couples from marriage is unconstitutional. The Cook County Clerk and States Attorney also agree that the marriage ban is unconstitutional. On Wednesday, November 21, 2012, State Representatives Greg Harris, Deborah Mell, and Kelly Cassidy filed HB 5710, the Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act in the Illinois General Assembly, which provides that all laws of Illinois applicable to marriage apply equally to marriages of same-sex and different-sex couples.
For more information about Lambda Legal's case, Darby v. Orr, visit the case page at www.lambdalegal.org/in-court/cases/darby-v-orr or to learn more about Lambda Legal's ILove Marriage campaign visit: http://www.lambdalegal.org/ilove
Camilla Taylor, National Marriage Project Director and Christopher Clark, Senior Staff Attorney in Lambda Legal's Midwest Regional Office are handling the case Darby v. Orr for Lambda Legal. They are joined by Emily Nicklin, Jordan M. Heinz and Amy Crawford of Kirkland & Ellis LLP in Chicago.