Chicago’s Mayor Daley: Let’s finish the job

By Cameron Tolle, Freedom to Marry's Online Organizer
This week, the state of Illinois took a significant step towards ending marriage discrimination as the state house and senate both passed a civil union bill. Civil unions will undoubtedly help same-sex couples in Illinois who, prior to the passage of this bill, have had no access to the protections and critical safety nets afforded to non-gay couples. 

Following the bill’s passage, Chicago’s Mayor Richard Daley praised the Illinois legislature for what he calls “coming into this new century” by extending protections and rights to gay and lesbian families. Daley, like numerous other mayors of major US cities, has been outspoken in his support for the freedom to marry. And while he’s thrilled at the insurmountable progress made in Illinois this week, Daley is the first to admit that civil unions aren’t a sufficient substitute for marriage. Daley made that clear at a news conference this week when he said, "I think finally they realized they should have the same rights under state law, which is really important, and eventually marriage will take place, it has to be."

We couldn’t agree more with Mayor Daley and the thousands of other Illinoisans who are celebrating this victory and ready to finish the job of winning marriage for all families in the state. Illinois has laid a solid foundation with civil unions, and we look forward to working with pro-marriage residents in the state to end the exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage once and for all.