Same Sex Marriage

by Beverly A. Pekala on June 2, 2014

Today’s the day. Well, to be technical, yesterday was the day. Same-sex marriage became legal in each of Illinois’ 102 counties on June 1, 2014. But yesterday happened to be a Sunday, so today marriage licenses will begin to issue throughout the entire state and many same-sex couples are expected to tie the knot today.  
The full name of the law authorizing gay marriage in Illinois is the Illinois Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act.  A long name for a simple idea. Before this new law became effective, both same-sex and opposite sex couples in Illinois could enter into civil unions. They still can if they wish, although it is anticipated couples will choose marriage over civil unions.
As of today, same-sex couples can marry in 19 states as well as Washington D.C. The 19 states are California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Iowa, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington.

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Would Legalizing Same-Sex Marriage Mean Millions for Illinois?

by Beverly A. Pekala on January 28, 2013

You bet.  And no one needs money more than the great state of Illinois. Just take a look at the millions projected to be made in Maryland, which legalized same-sex marriage last year. The Williams Institute conducted a study predicting that in a three year period weddings by Maryland couples would generate $40 to $64 million,with another $2.5 to $4 million in sales and lodging tax revenues. This doesn’t include expenses for out-of-state couples traveling to Maryland.

Now if the beautiful little state of Maryland expects these kinds of revenues, do the math and imagine the millions Illinois could generate.

Supporting gay marriage makes cents.

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How Many States Recognize Civil Unions?

January 22, 2013

The answer is 8….at least, as of today. The states which recognize civil unions are: Delaware, Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Hawaii and Illinois. But not so fast. Like most laws, this isn’t as simple as it sounds. For example, in Vermont, same-sex marriage was passed in 2009, so civil unions are no […]

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Civil Unions in Arizona?

January 22, 2013

Maybe. Arizona State Senator Ed Ableser introduced a bill which would legally recognize civil unions in Arizona for same-sex as well as opposite sex couples.  This is the same type of law we now have in Illinois, which provides legal recognition of civil unions for both heterosexual couples as well as gay couples.  (And if you’re asking why […]

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What About Supporting Gay Marriage Because It’s Fiscally Responsible?

January 18, 2013

For some, gay marriage is about equality. For some, it’s about morality. For others still reviewing the issue, perhaps an idea worth considering is that gay marriage is fiscally wise. To state the obvious, Illinois is deeply in debt. And weddings are big business. Actually, weddings are beyond big, they’re huge. On average, couples spend $25,000 on the cost of a […]

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Where is Gay Marriage Legal?

January 7, 2013

So here’s your quiz for the day. Which states permit same-sex couples to marry? Here are the answers (and they’re not even written upside down): Connecticut, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Vermont, and Washington. So 9 states permit gay marriage, but don’t forget that the District of Columbia allows gay marriage, too.

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Was Thursday the Day? Sort Of…

January 4, 2013

As it turned out, Thursday was not the day for legalizing gay marriage in Illinois. But it was the day Illinois moved closer to that goal,though perhaps mostly in spirit. Last evening (yes, this did happen after business hours) the Illinois Senate Executive Committee voted  8-5 in favor of the gay marriage legislation, which means the bill will […]

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Today’s Not The Day For Same-Sex Marriage in Illinois

January 3, 2013

We thought that today the Illinois Senate would have voted on legalizing same-sex marriage but the vote has been delayed for at least a week. The Illinois legislature will remain in lame-duck session until next Wednesday when the new session is sworn in. Whether there will be enough votes next week, or thereafter, to pass the bill permitting gay couples […]

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Thoughts for the New Year

January 2, 2013

Many say 2013 could be the year gay marriage is legally recognized throughout the United States. The US Supreme Court will take up the issue of same-sex marriage this year, hearing arguments in March and perhaps issuing a decision sometime in June. Should the Supreme Court strike down the Defense of Marriage Act the ramifications would be […]

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Will Gay Marriage Be Legal in Illinois?

May 31, 2012

Two lawsuits filed yesterday in Illinois argue that the failure of Cook County to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples violates the Illinois Constitution. The lead plaintiffs are a Chicago Police Detective, Tanya Lazro, and Liz Matos. Though Illinois civil unions became legal one year ago, the plaintiffs argue that Illinois civil unions are insufficient.  Illinois […]

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