WATCH: Jesse Tyler Ferguson Says Marriage Equality Is Defining Civil Rights Issue of Our Time

BY Sunnivie Brydum

January 04 2013 5:11 PM ET

Modern Family star Jesse Tyler Ferguson isn't just a fashionable supporter of marriage equality, he's an outspoken advocate. 

Speaking at the state capitol in Springfield, Ill. on Wednesday, the out actor told members of the press that both he and his character on Modern Family believe in marriage for all. 

"I can't imagine anyone who's a fan of the show would want to deny Mitchell and Cameron the chance to get married," Ferguson told reporters gathered to cover the legislature's consideration of a same-sex marriage bill. "If for nothing else, for amazing TV. Because I'm sure Cam would plan a really spectacular wedding."

But Ferguson, who is busy planning his own nuptials to boyfriend Justin Mikita, with whom he also recently launched a line of bowties sold to support marriage equality called Tie The Knot, also got serious about the importance of same-sex marriage.

"All this movement forward right now really confirms for me that marriage equality is the defining civil rights movement of our time," continued Ferguson. "And now Illinois has a chance to be on the right side of history today."

A state senate committee did vote in favor of the marriage equality bill, but supporters delayed a full vote on the bill, saying key members were absent for the holidays. Advocates have promised to reintroduce the bill during the next legislative session, which starts next week. 

Watch Ferguson's speech below.

 

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