Former Massachusetts Congressman Barney Frank said Tuesday that he hopes a proposed gay marriage bill in Illinois becomes law.

The marriage bill cleared the Senate on Valentine's Day but stalled in the House. Last week, as lawmakers held the first of two short fall work periods, supporters called on House leaders to approve the bill.

Frank, who has the distinction of being the first openly gay member of Congress and the first to enter a marriage with a member of the same sex, weighed in on the issue during a visit to Chicago.

“I think reality is helping,” Frank told the Chicago Sun-Times. “I'm hoping it'll happen. Certainly the evidence is there are no problems. All the negatives they were making [up] didn't come true. Certainly anyone who's looking at what's been the effect, it's been all good and no bad.”

House lawmakers could take up the issue next week, but many analyst believe it is more likely that members will table the matter until next year, after the threat of primary challengers has passed.