Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez said at a press conference Thursday afternoon that she supports lawsuits that question whether an Illinois ban on gay marriage is constitutional.
Two lawsuits recently brought by Lambda Legal and the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois argue that Cook County Clerk David Orr discriminates against gay couples that wish to marry, but are not allowed marriage licenses, the Chicago Sun-Times reported Thursday. Both Orr and Alvarez said they agree and also questioned whether a ban on gay marriage in Illinois is constitutional. Orr even compared the state's ban to laws that banned couples of different races from marrying.
The Chicago Tribune called it an "unprecedented turn" in the fight for marriage equality in the state, and said it was the first instance in which a state has refused to contest a lawsuit which questions the legality of a gay marriage ban.
Opponents are upset with the state's attorney’s office, WBEZ reported. The conservative Thomas Moore Society said they would be preparing legal documents to defend the law themselves. ABC7 News reported that Peter Breen of the Thomas Moore Society believes it was no coincidence that the lawsuits have been filed in Cook County, because of his expectation that politicians in Chicago will come out in support of gay marriage.
In the spirit that all politics is local, we're asking you. What do you think about Illinois ban on gay marriage? Do you think Alvarez was correct in refusing to fight the lawsuits? What does it mean in the fight for marriage equality in Illinois?
Tell us in comments.
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