CHICAGO — The governor of Illinois signed a bill into law on Wednesday that allows homosexuals to ‘wed’ in the state.
Democratic Governor Pat Quinn held a signing ceremony at the University of Illinois in Chicago, which was attended by an estimated 2,000-3,000 supporters, including former White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, who now serves as mayor of the city.
“This new law is an epic victory for equal rights in America,” Quinn stated. “Illinois is moving forward. … We are a model for our country. If the Land of Lincoln can achieve marriage equality, so can every other state in the nation.”
Using a hundred pens to sign the Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act into law, Quinn sat down at a desk that had been shipped in from Springfield, which had been used by President Abraham Lincoln in 1861 to write his first inaugural address.
“Love never fails,” he stated, “and I’m going to sign this bill.”
Three Christians stood outside of the building holding a sign that declared “Homosexual ‘marriage’ is against nature’s law and nature’s God.”
As previously reported, a number of lawmakers spoke out against the legislation earlier this month as the bill was being debated in the House, stating that it was a violation of Scripture.
“This debate is a joke,” remarked Democratic Representative Mary Flowers. “[They] will not be truly married in God’s eyes.”
She pointed to the Book of Genesis during her comments, noting that God specifically created the woman for the man.
Republican Representative Dwight Kay agreed. He told his fellow lawmakers that America was founded upon Scripture even before the U.S. Constitution was created.
“My conviction happens to be that this (gay marriage) is wrong, but my conviction is that Scripture is right,” he declared, according to the Chicago Tribune.
But House Speaker Michael Madigan cited the recent remarks of Pope Francis in explaining his decision to support the bill.
“[T]he quote that I offer is a quote from Pope Francis of the Roman Catholic church, who is quoted as saying, ‘If someone is gay, and he searches for the Lord, and he has good will, who am I to judge?’” he stated. “Pope Francis has spoken, and he has articulated the basis of my thinking on this issue.”
“Jesus loves everyone,” Representative Ken Dunkin of the General Assembly’s black caucus contended.
The legislation ultimately passed 61 to 54, and moved on to the Senate, where it was approved 31 to 21.
Laurie Higgins of the Illinois Family Institute wrote in an article yesterday that the legalization of homosexual “marriage” may open the door to all types of other marital arrangements.
“I’ve not yet heard ‘progressives’ offer reasons why their newfangled definition of marriage that says marriage is just about love would allow for the retention of the requirement that marriage be composed of only two people,” she wrote. “Already polygamists of the Fundamentalist Latter Day Saints variety and polyamorists are using the very same definition to fight for their ‘equal marriage rights.'”
The bill is set to take effect on June 1, 2014. NBC Chicago reports that the Illinois Office of Tourism has already begun promoting “gay-friendly” tourism spots in the state.
Photo: Chris Eaves