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Project Marriage Illinois on Hold
by Amy Wooten
2007-03-14

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The anti-gay Illinois Family Institute's ( IFI ) Protect Marriage Illinois Project is on hold for now, according to the organization's leader.

The project wished to re-launch its effort to place a non-binding anti-gay referendum on the 2008 general election ballot after failing in 2006, but due to a lack of funding, is putting the project on hold.

Last year, the Illinois Board of Elections proved the group was unable to get the necessary number of valid signatures needed to place a non-binding referendum on the 2006 ballot. The Illinois Court of Appeals and Supreme Court rejected the group's efforts to file a suit challenging the state's referendum laws.

IFI wishes to place an advisory referendum asking the Illinois General Assembly to amend the state's constitution to prohibit same-sex marriages and civil unions.

When asked if the suspension of the project is temporary, IFI Executive Director Dave Smith told Windy City Times, 'We'll see,' adding that the organization is currently focusing on different ways of obtaining funding.

'It's interesting to see Rep. [ Greg ] Harris get this right out of the box, while our amendment has been sitting in the Rules Committee for three or four years now,' Smith continued. 'That's democracy for you.'

In February, Harris, D-Chicago, introduced House Bill 1615, the Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act. The measure would recognize same-sex marriage in Illinois.

In a recent IFI newsletter, the organization wrote that protecting heterosexual marriage must continue to be a top priority.


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