Illinois Senate President John
Cullerton, a Democrat from Chicago, wants his chamber to approve a
gay marriage bill on Valentine's Day.
“I'd like to pass it out of committee
next week and pass it on Valentine's Day,” Cullerton told the
Sun-Times on Thursday.
Cullerton said the measure, which would
make Illinois the 10th state to legalize gay nuptials, has
the necessary 30 votes to clear the Senate and move to the House.
Sponsors of the bill, Senator Heather
Steans and Rep. Greg Harris, both Democrats from Chicago, first
pushed for passage in January during a lame-duck session of the
Steans suggested that the bill's
language regarding religious exemptions was to blame for last month's
“I think under the language we're
working on, everyone is a lot more comfortable there's no threat of a
religious place having to open up to a religious ceremony if they
don't want to,” Steans told the Sun-Times.
The General Assembly's spring session
begins Tuesday, February 5.