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Illinois House Speaker Extends Approval Deadline For Marriage Equality Bill

Following Friday's major disappointment in Illinois, it appears that all may not be lost.

Illinois's marriage equality bill deadline date for approval, previously set for May 31, was "quietly" extended into the summer. 

According to the Illinois Observer:

House Speaker Michael Madigan (D-Chicago) acted quietly on Friday night before the House adjourned to extend the bill’s deadline for approval until August 31.

State Rep. Greg Harris (D-Chicago) told a packed House chamber on Friday evening that he had to put off a vote on the proposal until November.

However, were Governor Pat Quinn to call lawmakers back to Springfield in the summer for a special session to address pension reform, which also was left without resolution, he could include Senate Bill 10 in a special session proclamation.

If Quinn declines to include marriage equality in any order to lawmakers to return to Springfield, Madigan could call a House special session of his own at the same time to take up the legislation, an insider noted.

“It’s a fascinating move,” said one, long-time lobbyist. “It suggests that there is plan to get it done.”

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This doesn't, however, mean that marriage equality is a slam dunk due to the extension. The Observer points out that:

"Nevertheless, during a summer session, House lawmakers would need to amend the bill and change the effective date from '30 days' from a gubernatorial signature to January 1 in order to avoid a 3/5th or 71 vote requirement, an insurmountable hurdle.

Amending the bill’s effective date would also require an Illinois Senate vote to concur with such a change."

Will the Illinois Senate also convene this summer to make the required vote?

It's time to put the pressure on to ensure that marriage equality gets legalized by August 31.

 

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