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items tagged with Gay Marriage

Gay-Marriage Bill Clears Path for GOP Candidates
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Illinois Politics

2013-11-10 17:00:13

Perhaps the biggest loser in November 5’s historic passage of a gay-marriage bill in Springfield was the National Organization for Marriage.

The group, based in Washington, DC, has been at the forefront of attempts to stop gay marriage in states throughout the country. A Maine investigation uncovered what it claimed were internal NOM documents about the group’s strategy, including this passage: “The strategic goal of this project is to drive a wedge between gays and blacks – two key Democratic constituencies. Find, equip, energize, and connect African-American spokespeople for marriage; develop a media campaign around their objections to gay marriage as a civil right; provoke the gay-marriage base into responding by denouncing these spokesmen and -women as bigots. No politician wants to take up and push an issue that splits the base of the party.”

The organization tried all that in Illinois, spending tens of thousands of dollars on politically connected consultants and robo-calls into black districts in the spring, summer, and right up until the day of the vote, and holding media-friendly events in the black community. The bill wasn’t called for a vote last spring mainly because black House members were overwhelmed by fervent local opposition.


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Lack of African-American Support Dooms Gay-Marriage Bill
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Illinois Politics

2013-06-09 11:17:18

There’s more than enough blame to go around regarding the failure of the gay-marriage bill during the final days of the General Assembly’s spring session, which ended May 31.

Governor Pat Quinn knew that African-American House members were reluctant to support the bill, mainly because of pressure from their churches. So, why did he pick a nasty fight with the Black Caucus over Medicaid? Quinn was offering projects to Republican legislators to entice them to flip, but he couldn’t find a few million Medicaid dollars to help poor people get wheelchairs and preventive dental care? That late-session fight over Medicaid spending was counterproductive. Instead of using the disagreement to his advantage, Quinn dug in his heels and so did the Black Caucus, which also initially refused to support a gay-rights measure several years ago after being cut out of a gaming-expansion bill.

Senate President John Cullerton said he didn’t regret passing the gay-marriage bill out of his chamber in mid-February, before the House votes were lined up. Back then, the House roll call was reportedly in the 40s. (Sixty votes are needed to pass.) Usually, proponents try to wire these things so they pass both chambers quickly. Cullerton said he feared opponents would begin gearing up and believed the bill needed to be passed as quickly as possible. But passing that bill without first making sure the House was ready to deal with it energized opponents and gave them time to organize.


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Ted Rall: Making Progress ... on One Issue, in Some States
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Lifestyle

Category: Ted Rall

2013-03-29 13:31:39



Ted Rall: The Miracle of DNA
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Lifestyle

Category: Ted Rall

2013-03-18 11:51:24



Why Illinois Republicans Want Gay Marriage to Pass
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Illinois Politics

2013-01-27 11:54:17

Off the record, most top Illinois Republicans these days will tell you that they want a state bill legalizing gay marriage passed as soon as possible.

It’s not that they’re necessarily in favor of gay marriage. Many of them are publicly and privately opposed. Some of them do support it, even though they don’t feel they can vote for it because it might destroy their careers in the next GOP primary.

The reason so many Republicans would like to see the bill passed is because they know – with the huge new Democratic majorities in both state legislative chambers – that it’s eventually going to pass anyway, and they want to get this issue out of the way and behind them as soon as possible. The issue is trending hard against the GOP’s historical opposition, and they want the thing off the table before it starts to hurt them.


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