* I told subscribers about this possibility earlier in the week…
Gay and lesbian couples celebrated yesterday after the Illinois legislature approved a bill legalizing same-sex marriage. However, the new law would require couples looking to wed to wait until the summer of 2014. An immediate effective date would have required 10 more votes than the measure received in the House.
But an amendment that Oak Park Democratic Sen. Don Harmon filed today to House Bill 2747 might speed up that timeline. The measure could not be taken up until after January 1, when the vote threshold for an immediate effective date drops back to the standard majority. The proposed amendment would allow the same-sex marriage law to go into effect anytime after HB 2747 was passed and signed into law.
“Whether that’s Valentine’s Day of next year or some other date, we could make sure folks have access to equality earlier than they would.” Harmon said he does not yet know if there is interest among his colleagues to take another vote on same-sex marriage, especially at a date even closer to the spring primary elections. “I don’t know if there’s an appetite to do so, but it seems silly at this point to be delaying people’s marriage plans based on our legislative calendar.”
The House just released its schedule and the chamber isn’t returning next year until January 29th for the governor’s State of the State address. The next regular session day will be February 4th.