A bill that would amend the Illinois constitution to ban marriage equality is dead for this year, LGBT activists say.
State senate president John Cullerton Wednesday referred the bill to the senate subcommittee on constitutional amendments, which has no members. That means there is no chance of the measure being passed by the senate and moved to the house by the mid-April deadline for the chambers to exchange bills.
“Subcommittees are where you put bills to die,” activist Rick Garcia (pictured) told Windy City Times. “And there are no members appointed to the subcommittee on constitutional amendments. The bill went to committee and it was quickly dispatched as it should have been.”
Illinois already has a statutory ban on same-sex marriage, but constitutional bans are more difficult to overcome. Earlier this year Gov. Pat Quinn signed into law a bill establishing civil unions for both gay and straight couples, something that proponents see as a step toward marriage equality.
The move comes a day after a more conservative neighbor, Indiana, advanced an anti–marriage equality constitutional amendment with an initial legislative approval. It would have to be passed in a subsequent session of the legislature and approved by a popular vote before becoming law, however.