Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn is urging citizens to call on their representatives to act now to pass legislation legalizing same-sex marriage in the state.
The Democratic governor, who signed the current civil unions law, has been eager to sign the marriage bill since the start of 2013.
The measure has passed the state Senate and a crucial House committee vote but still needs approval in the full House. A vote could come this week or next.
Quinn, in a recent letter to supporters of the legislation, wrote, "Marriage equality is coming to Illinois – and if we all do our part, we can pass this historic legislation as soon as this week."
The governor claimed support from allies beyond the Democratic stronghold of Chicago, including advocates in Woodstock, Carbondale, Calumet City and Moline. People in those communities are ready to "stand on the right side of history," he said.
However, Quinn said more calls and emails to lawmakers are needed to shore up the 60 votes needed in the House to pass the Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act, which would legalize marriage for same-sex couples and provide protections and exemptions for religious groups.
"Now let’s pass this bill," Quinn wrote in encouraging citizen action.
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