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Quinn says he will work to help “build a majority” for same sex marriage

Thursday, Feb 16, 2012

* Up until yesterday, Gov. Pat Quinn has been hedging on whether he’d support a gay marriage bill. From the AP

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn says he doesn’t know if he would support legislation that would give same sex couples the same rights as heterosexual couples.

The Democrat supported same sex civil unions, which became legal in Illinois last summer. However, he said [Tuesday] he wants to study issues surrounding same-sex marriage before he makes a decision.

The governor said Tuesday that he hadn’t yet looked at a proposal for gay marriage, but said he would. He talked about how he helped pass and then signed the civil unions bill into law. Quinn said it was “important to monitor that, and study” the new law’s impact and said he wanted to let the legislative process work. Listen…

* Before the 2010 election, Quinn said he wasn’t opposed to a gay marriage bill

Quinn said wasn’t opposed to legalizing gay marriage in Illinois. He said he wouldn’t “stand in the way, if “the voters of Illinois want to have it come to pass.

The governor has since been on the receiving end of tons of criticism by his Catholic Church for using his religion to justify his position on civil unions. So, it was easy to see why he was hedging.

* But, yesterday Quinn was finally pinned down by WBEZ’s Steve Edwards. After mentioning that Mayor Rahm Emanuel supports same sex marriage and would “push for it,” Quinn started rambling about how he’d helped pass the civil unions bill and how the legislative process had to work, but Edwards kept gently pressing and Quinn finally said this…

“I look forward to working with the advocates on this issue to build a majority.”

Edwards followed up by saying that it sounded like Quinn would help pass a same sex marriage bill. Quinn’s response…

“I think I just said that without me the last bill, civil unions, wouldn’t have passed. You gotta work with members from all parts of Illinois, every part of our state, some parts are more liberal than others, and ultimately we’ll get to Heaven.”

…Adding… I mentioned this in comments, but it probably bears repeating here as well. Quinn uses the “get to Heaven” phrase all the time on a myriad of things. He wasn’t equating gay marriage with Heaven. It’s just one of his quirks.

Listen…

* If I haven’t said it before, I’ll say it now: Steve Edwards is a great interviewer. He clearly listens to his subjects and isn’t just thinking about the next question. Frankly, it’s a bit off-putting that the rest of Illinois’ media hasn’t yet caught on to the two significant stories he broke with this one Quinn interview. Good job, Steve.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


43 Comments
  1. - Shock & Awww(e) - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 12:58 pm:

    Hope the sponsors of this bill are equally active introducing legislation dealing with the budget, pensions, worker’s comp., etc.


  2. - JoeVerdeal - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 1:00 pm:

    Interesting that Governor Quinn seemed to be describing gay marriage as “Heaven”……Hmmmmmmmm


  3. - Small Town Liberal - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 1:14 pm:

    - Hope the sponsors of this bill are equally active introducing legislation dealing with the budget, pensions, worker’s comp., etc. -

    God I’m sick of this. How come I never see comments like this when folks are introducing concealed carry bills? Go look at the GA’s website, lots of legislation being thrown out there. Legislating isn’t working on an assembly line, folks are often doing many things at once.


  4. - Mom - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 1:46 pm:

    “Interesting that Governor Quinn seemed to be describing gay marriage as “Heaven”……Hmmmmmmmm”

    We’ve broken your code, Joe Verdeal. We get it. You’re trying to cast aspersions on Quinn’s masculinity, as though sexual preference defines masculinity.

    If this makes you feel like more of a man, you may want to rethink what informs your sense of self.


  5. - WazUp - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 1:52 pm:

    More warped theology from the Gov.


  6. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 1:58 pm:

    People, he uses that “get to Heaven” phrase all the time. It’s just a quirk of his. Take a breath.


  7. - CircularFiringSquad - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:03 pm:

    Quite the little Mr Morals today
    First we coddle the bankrupt Tribbie on their virgin step into porn
    And then we caution the wing nuts not to get a sweaty on the gay/lesbian stuff
    Just let ‘em run wild Rich
    BTW have you finished reading the Simpson report?
    Did we give the student course credit? Did taxpayers foot the bill?


  8. - Wensicia - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:11 pm:

    I can imagine the response from the Archdiocese.


  9. - Dirty Red - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:17 pm:

    Quinn was pretty to the point on where he stood on gay marriage during the 2010 campaign (yay to civil unions nay to marraige). Are we thinking this is a total turn around? Because if he’s still against it, what better way to kill this bill than for him to lobby in its favor?


  10. - WazUp - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:17 pm:

    “Everyone wants to get to Heaven .. but no one wants to die to get there.” - Peter Tosh


  11. - just 'cause - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:30 pm:

    I’m not sure he deserves the credit he gives himself for civil unions. I know Harris a lot of others did a lot of heavy lifting. Did anyone need Pat Quinn telling them to vote for it? And would it make a difference if he had? Gov. Irrelevant stands tall again.


  12. - titan - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:32 pm:

    We’re going the wrong direction, further down a mistaken road.

    Marriage is an institution that is inherently tied into the religious realm. When the country was more monolithically religious (and the non-Christian religions with any significant numbers were similarly aligned on the issue) there was little friction and a religious status got entwined with the law.

    The logical (and Constitutionally more solid) solution is not to expand marriage by shifting civil unions into marriages, but for government to get out of the marriage business and shift “government marriages” over into civil unions.

    Shift marriage to a non-public function, and let the various churches, synagouges, mosques and temples (and covens and whatever else) deal with marriages under their own terms. All couples (whatever their composition) would get a public civil union. Some of those couples could get a private mariage under the standards of whatever group(s) they affiliate with (and the public would be out of it).


  13. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:34 pm:

    ===Marriage is an institution that is inherently tied into the religious realm===

    Hmm. Well, my parents got married by a judge. So did I. So did a whole lot of other people I know.


  14. - Shore - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:38 pm:

    fix the state’s fiscal and economic situation then fight your culture war.

    thanks

    the taxpayers


  15. - Colossus - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:45 pm:

    Rich, I see your point about the judge and Titan’s opening salvo, but I think he’s still on the ball. The thrust of the argument still stands, not that I ever think it will happen. It’s one of those on my wish list, nice to have but not something to spend capital on getting.


  16. - Shock & Awww(e) - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:52 pm:

    Small Town Liberal @ 1:14: Thanks for reinforcing my point.

    Take a look at the ILGA website. Take a look at the legislation Reps. Harris, Mell & Cassidy have filed so far in 2012.

    Short on time? Then please allow me to help out:


  17. - Shock & Awww(e) - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:53 pm:

    Rep. Harris: 23 bills. 18 make technical changes. Remaining 5 bills:

    - Reinsurance agreements
    - Expand DHS Public Aid coverage to include Behavior Analysis Services
    - Change provisions in AODAD Act; Rename Compulsive Gambling Program the Disordered Gambling Program
    - Expand CHIP coverage to include “any expense or charge for routine physical examinations or tests”
    - Marriage Fairness Act


  18. - reformer - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:55 pm:

    All but a handful of GOP legislators opposed civil unions, and some of them are gone or going (Beaubien and Mulligan). Unless and until the GOP changes it view on the subject, I don’t see how same-sex marriage could pass, since downstate Dems and targets will vote NO or Present.


  19. - Shock & Awww(e) - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:55 pm:

    Rep. Mell: 8 bills. 0 make technical changes. Remaining 8 bills:

    - Creates a state administered IRA retirement fund for private sector employees whose employers do not offer retirement plans
    - Reduces Class 3 felony to a Class 2 felony for knowingly selling or giving a firearm to a felon
    - Expands definition of public transportation vehicles; makes certain passing of those vehicles on the left side illegal
    - Extends the grace period for voter registration
    - Creates $50 fine for violating Litter Control Act
    - Enable landlords to evict tenants for “gang-related activity”
    - Public access to the State Police Organized Criminal Gang Database instead of just police and prosecutors (HB5564)
    - Public access to the State Police Organized Criminal Gang Database instead of just police and prosecutors, with additional requirements to the legislation above (HB5588)


  20. - Shock & Awww(e) - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:57 pm:

    Rep. Cassidy: 27 bills. 7 make technical changes. The other 20 range from:

    - Banning installation of drycleaning machines that use perchloroethylene; to
    - Creating the Illinois Family and Medical Leave Act

    No time to write up all 20 at the moment, but they’re there for anyone to see as you mention.


  21. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 2:58 pm:

    Colossus, some people are religious and marry someone of a different religion and can’t get either church to perform the ceremony. Some people are religious and don’t go to church. Some people are not religious. Religion can’t have marriage for itself. Sorry. It’s a state function and has been for a very long time.


  22. - Shock & Awww(e) - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 3:05 pm:

    So what’s my point? Simple.

    I’m sick of things too, STL. A lot of Illinoisans are.

    Not everyone who holds a different opinion from you or others on this blog have some sort of blind, biased, ugly motive for disagreeing or opposing something. Some people are just really, really, really and legitimately concerned about the tipping point we seem to be approaching.

    Those same people also realize that it’s going to take a joint effort to get things back in order.

    If you take a look at that legislation, I see plenty of stuff that fits traditional GOP criticisms: big government, expansion of state services and costs, emphasis on environmental protection in the middle of a weak economy, etc.

    I do NOT see anything relating to the budget, pension, worker’s comp., etc. None. Zero. Zip. Zilch. Nada.

    We can sing and dance all we want while the house burns. Until we stop singing, dancing and pointing fingers at each other long enough to put out the fire, we’re all going to burn in that house.

    Together.


  23. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 3:11 pm:

    Shock & Awww(e), you really need to take a breath.

    Rep. Harris sits on an Appropriations Committee. He will be very involved with the budget, which, as you should know, is not yet introduced.

    Again, take a freaking breath.


  24. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 3:13 pm:

    And Rep. Cassidy sits on two Approp committees.

    Your logic is just way off.


  25. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 3:14 pm:

    Also, Harris just held hearings on the shenanigans over at DCFS. Your analysis is overly simplistic and flat wrong.


  26. - Small Town Liberal - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 3:23 pm:

    - Some people are just really, really, really and legitimately concerned about the tipping point we seem to be approaching. -

    Yeah, and some of us are legitimately concerned that a huge number of our brothers and sisters are being discriminated against and treated like second class citizens.


  27. - Shock & Awww(e) - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 3:28 pm:

    Rich, I think Shore sums it up very well @ 2:38.

    I also think the logic and concern is very clear and very genuine. 58 bills introduced so far as primary sponsors. 0 dealing with very serious fiscal issues threatening fundamental state services and oversight.

    No legislation, press conferences or releases dealing with bold plans for fiscal reform. Plenty of time for virtually everything else.

    These facts are based solely on the actions of these legislators so far in 2012, pure and simple.

    With that, I will take a breath, LOL.


  28. - late to the party - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 3:30 pm:

    If you want to make everything public a ‘Civil Union’ you are going to have to change a lot of existing statute by striking the word “marriage” and inserting “civil union”. If you just make the one change that allows for same sex marriage, you don’t have to change any of those laws. I’m not sure how many exactly, but probably more than we want the GA’s hands on.


  29. - Wantstogetmarriedlegally - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 3:33 pm:

    Hear, hear STL. My guess is that Shock either doesn’t favor equal rights, or is just writing politically motivated rants that no one cares about. Either way, he/she needs to relax, as noted by Rich.


  30. - Shock & Awww(e) - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 3:40 pm:

    - Yeah, and some of us are legitimately concerned that a huge number of our brothers and sisters are being discriminated against and treated like second class citizens. -

    Yeah, and some of us even have friends and relatives you would put in that category. Some of us might even be in that category.

    They all need jobs, pensions, basic health services and a social safety net first and foremost. So they can exercise those rights. And afford those marriage licenses and wedding receptions.

    But hey, we all have different priorities.

    Looking forward to lots of press and legislation on fiscal issues from these Reps. this session.


  31. - late to the party - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 3:41 pm:

    What is wrong with some of you people? We were in the middle of a WORLD WAR while women were fighting for the right to vote. You think times are SOOOOO tough now that we can’t even discuss equal marriage rights for our LGBT brothers and sisters? Really? Please. If you don’t believe in equal marriage rights, just say it. Don’t hide behind a fiscal crisis (what will the crisis be next year?). By that logic, this issue will never be addressed. Maybe that’s the goal.

    Okay, I will now take a breath.


  32. - Bill Baar - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 3:58 pm:

    re: It’s a state function and has been for a very long time.

    I suppose long time depends on your framer of reference, but I believe licensing marriage new since the civil war. At least widespread licensing by the “State”.


  33. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 4:02 pm:

    Actually, Bill, I was referring to ancient Rome.


  34. - Shock & Awww(e) - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 4:37 pm:

    lttp - VERY well put!

    We can and should discuss these issues and vote on them, especially during difficult times or anything else that comes our way. At least I hope we should be able to.

    Simply looking for leadership on the fiscal issues, from both parties.

    STL suggested checking the ILGA website, so I did once again. It was surprising to see so many bills from these representatives dealing with so much other than our fiscal issues.

    If people didn’t automatically assume the worst, they would understand this criticism holds equally true for any right-leaning legislator spending nearly all their time on other issues or who thinks this is the best time to introduce and focus on legislation defining marriage as strictly between a man and a woman - while introducing 57 other bills, mostly dealing with conservative social issues - but doesn’t also introduce at least one piece of legislation dealing with our fiscal issues.

    Fortunately, Rich points out these legislators will surely play an active role in addressing those financial issues as well. So we’ll see how serious both parties are about getting our fiscal house in order. Not just one party or the other, but both. I look forward to seeing the work of these 3 representatives on those fiscal issues during this session - as well as the work of more conservative members of the ILGA, and the legislation they all submit on these issues.


  35. - D.P. Gumby - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 4:59 pm:

    The Mass.S.C. legalizing same-gender marriage did an excellent job analyzing the legal basis of marriage determining that it was a civil benefit under law and that there was no basis to entwine the religious arguments w/in this civil right. If one wants to still call it “marriage” or “civil union” is irrelevant, everyone should be treated the same under law. Then, if various religions want to do something and call it whatever they want, that’s fine, too. But the civil right should not be burdened w/ the sacred.


  36. - titan - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 5:05 pm:

    D.P. Gumby - my point (see above) precisely.
    “Marriage” was the religious institution first, which government got involved with later. The religious aren’t going to back down on the turf war, so solving it fully requires backing government out of “marriage” entirely.


  37. - Cheryl44 - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 5:23 pm:

    I’d prefer getting the church out of a function of the government myself. Get yourself legally married by a government official and if you need to have that religious ceremony, go ahead and have that separately.

    Marriage benefits the state and would be good the economy.


  38. - wordslinger - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 5:52 pm:

    –I’m not sure he deserves the credit he gives himself for civil unions. I know Harris a lot of others did a lot of heavy lifting. Did anyone need Pat Quinn telling them to vote for it? And would it make a difference if he had? Gov. Irrelevant stands tall again.–

    He signed the bill. How’s that for relevant? What do you think the guy he beat would have done?


  39. - CircularFiringSquad - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 6:20 pm:

    How about we all step back and wait for S&A’s vision for IL and solving the problems
    Grab your crayon and sketch out your “ideas”, I am sure we can get AB, DK, GmanJim or some other wing nut to draft bills. Too bad RxRon is gone.
    BTW I think today was the last day for bill intros in the house, but hey they can file amendments too.


  40. - hisgirlfriday - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 6:32 pm:

    To those so concerned about the budget and so mad at the Democrats for failing to deal with it, I don’t understand why that is a part of your objection to extending marriage rights to gays. That’s the one thing the GA and the governor can give away that won’t cost the taxpayers any money.

    As for this being so at odds with the historical precedents for marriage… well… so? As a woman I’m kind of glad we accepted progress and decided that despite historical practice to the contrary, that we could establish that married women could own property and were not chattel of their husbands but instead equal partners entering into a life contract with each other. I’m glad if I want to get married, that my father won’t have to pony up a hefty dowry in order for a guy to agree to marry me. And I’m glad if I fall in love with someone who doesn’t share my skin color or my religious sect that the state won’t stand in my way as it would have in the past.

    Marriage is a good institution for society and for individuals but as society changes, marriage needs to keep up with the times so as to stay a relevant vibrant institution. Thankfully, historically marriage has done just that in changing to fit societal norms so the institution could keep going.


  41. - John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 7:17 pm:

    >>>>>Reduces Class 3 felony to a Class 2 felony

    Hmm, that’s an increase, not a reduction.


  42. - wishbone - Thursday, Feb 16, 12 @ 9:53 pm:

    ” emphasis on environmental protection in the middle of a weak economy,”

    Yeah, like we should have to have filthy air and water until the economy gets better. Where do Republicans get this stuff?


  43. - @G_Stevens_ - Friday, Feb 17, 12 @ 9:58 am:

    I just wanted to congratulate Small Town Liberal for speaking eloquently with the remark, “God I’m sick of this. How come I never see comments like this when folks are introducing concealed carry bills?” Thank you for shining a light on the hypocrisy.


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        * Rahm and Sun-Times editor Jim Kirk.
        * Mark Anderson: Chicago progressives have an embarrassment of riches.
        * You think the Hinsdale board was crappy to teachers? Look at what they are doing to plow over the support staff.
        * The court issues an injunction against the Philadelphia Schools Commission.
        * I’m with Ben. No circular firing squads. Focus on Rahm. Not on each other.
        * Agreement in Waukegan. A three-year deal. Update: Teachers ratify.
        * Happy Halloween.
        * Anatomy Of A Tribune Editorial


        * Editorial: Governors, raining taxpayer $ on Illinois
        * Editorial: Rauner best choice as governor to begin to reverse Illinois’ fortunes
        * Quinn to celebrate Rauner’s UI Labs accomplishment
        * Another Democrat Runs Away From Pat Quinn
        * Governor Pat Quinn Statement on Tentative Agreement to End Waukegan Teacher Strike, Return Students to Classrooms - State Education Chief Worked Overnight to Reach Common Ground, Students Heading Back to School on Monday




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