Equality Illinois' Rick Garcia is bullish on the chances of the General Assembly passing State Rep. Greg Harris' civil unions bill (SB 1716) during the veto session that begins in mid-November. “Whenever the legislature is back in session, we can do it," he told Illinois Statehouse News. "This issue is not a big deal.”
In theory, guaranteeing same-sex couples the same legal protections afforded to straight couples shouldn't be controversial. A large majority of Illinoisans support the legal reform. But the General Assembly is a different beast. While attitudes in Springfield are changing, Harris himself admits that Garcia might be too optimistic. Whether the Chicago Democrat pushes the bill will depend on the legislative elections this fall. He will have a better shot if Democrats hold their majorities in both chambers. If State Sen. Bill Brady maintains his lead in the gubernatorial race, however, all bets are off.