An effort to put a non-binding
referendum on the ballot recommending that Illinois lawmakers ban gay marriage with
a constitutional amendment has come up short.
Jim Finnegan, president of the
conservative group Illinois Defense of Marriage Initiative, told the
Sun-Times that he expects about 100,000 of the 500,000
signatures needed to put the issue on the November ballot to be
collected by the end of the month.
In February, less than a year after the
state approved a measure that recognizes gay and lesbian couples with
civil unions, three openly gay lawmakers introduced a gay marriage
Finnegan said his group's effort to
block gay marriage from being legalized in Illinois sends a strong
“Those people that brought this bill
up, they'll bring it again and again,” Finnegan told the paper.
“This gives us a strong indication of who will be heard on this.”
State Rep. Greg Harris, a Democrat and
the primary sponsor of the proposed gay marriage law, said that he
did not believe state lawmakers would debate the measure this year.
“I never say never,” Harris said.
“[But] I don't think there will be a push before the end of this