Chicago, IL —
Illinois Majority Leader Barbara Flynn Currie is calling on House members to approve a gay marriage bill.
Currie, the chamber's second-ranking Democrat, said in a letter to House members earlier this month that allowing gay couples to marry is a matter of equality and that it would boost the state's economy.
The marriage measure was approved in the Senate on Valentine's Day. But a vote in the House was called off by its sponsor, Rep. Greg Harris, at the last moment. Harris recently suggested that a vote might not come until next year.
"Illinois has been missing out on this economic opportunity long before Minneapolis' mayor unleashed his advertising campaign in our state," Currie said, a reference to Mayor R.T Rybak's "Marry Me In Minneapolis" campaign.
"For whichever reason moves you, it's time we stop playing second fiddle to our neighbors and do what is best for our state," she added.
Illinois is one of four states which recognize gay couples with civil unions. The other three are New Jersey, Hawaii and Colorado.