SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (IRN) – It’s possible the Illinois House will vote on same-sex marriage when lawmakers return to Springfield for the final three days of the fall session this week.

Springfield-area gay rights activists staged a demonstration outside the local Social Security office to point out Social Security is one benefit of marriage which does not extend to those in a civil union.

“A lot of people in the LGBT community, we’re Christians,” says organizer Scott Cross. “We’re people of faith. We’re your neighbors, your friends, sons, daughters, and families. And it’s so important to us that our families are validated; that our love is treated equally.”

Even if Springfield resident Buff Carmichael is permitted to legally marry his partner of 21 years, acceptance is unlikely.

“I can only estimate that I have, I think, nine grandchildren,” he says. “I’ve never seen any of them.”

A representative of the governor’s office, chief of staff Ryan Croke, voiced the governor’s support for same-sex marriage but afterward would not commit that signing that bill would, like the Archer Daniels Midland tax break proposal, come only after the pension puzzle is solved.


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