Windy City Media Group Frontpage News Home
CELEBRATING 28+ YEARS OF Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender NEWS

Search Gay News Articles
Advanced Search
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2014-11-26
Download Issue
  News Index   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds     AIDS @ 32       Marriage
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime

Sponsor
Center, chef host homeless dinner Center, chef host
homeless dinner
On Nov. 22, Q-Tea-Pie Chef Shiane Wilcoxen, in partnership with the Center ...

Browse Gay News Index   Browse Gay News Archives
  Windy City Times

Lisa Madigan talks Illinois marriage push
by Kate Sosin, Windy City Times
2013-06-23

facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email


Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan has been dogged by the marriage question all year. It's not that she doesn't support equal marriage—that much has long been clear—but her stance on the issue has been closely watched, first when she intervened in favor of lawsuits seeking equal marriage and then when her father, Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan, took up the issue in the House, where he supported efforts to legalize same-sex marriage.

Michael Madigan has drawn scorn from some LGBT activists who feel did not do enough to pass equal marriage before session ended in May. And some of that anger has been directed at Lisa Madigan, a possible gubernatorial contender and longtime equal marriage supporter.

Windy City Times caught up with Lisa Madigan and asked her about why she intervened in favor of same-sex couples in court, what she did to help the marriage bill and how she feels about the anger resulting from that shortfall.

Windy City Times: So, you put out a statement after the session ended without a vote on equal marriage about why you think the ban is unconstitutional. How are you feeling now that some time has passed?

Lisa Madigan: I think I'm much more positive now than I was on the last day of session. I think everybody who has worked hard to see the gay marriage bill pass was both upset and disappointed that it didn't. At this point, what I am hopeful of is that we are going to take our negative emotions and turn that into positive energy that's going to be necessary to ultimately pass this bill in Illinois.

WCT: You came out very early in the lawsuits seeking equal marriage and took the position that the ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional. How did you come to that position?

Lisa Madigan: For many years now, personally, I have been supportive of gay marriage. As those debates started taking place in state legislatures, but also in state courts around the country, I followed very closely the legal arguments that have been made and the ultimate resolution of those cases. For anybody who has done that, you see that the legal landscape has been changing relatively rapidly.

You had a situation that in the mid-to-late '90s, you started to see a lot of state legislatures pass bans on same-sex marriage and then it was really more in the early 2000s, mid-2000s, you started seeing legal challenges to those statutes. You have numerous courts at this point that have ruled that those bans on same-sex marriage are unconstitutional in large part because they violate equal protection provisions.

In particular, the case out of Connecticut is very similar to the situation that Illinois is in. There was a challenge to the ban. They had passed a civil unions law, and ultimately their supreme court said that it was unconstitutional to have these two different types of recognition of relationships.

I think if you're true to the legal analysis of equal protection case law, you find that these bans on same-sex marriage simply are violative of equal protection.

WCT: This, of course, is going to be very important with the Supreme Court decision on the Defense of Marriage Act expected. What do you think are some of the ramifications for Illinois depending on the outcome?

Lisa Madigan: I shouldn't prognosticate because that's never a wise thing to do, but I think there's certainly both hope and believe that the U.S. Supreme Court will strike down DOMA [the Defense of Marriage Act], in large part simply because marriage has always been something that is determined at a state level and not at the federal level.

If there are favorable decisions out of the Supreme Court, I think that adds momentum to work that is taking place in states around the country to pass gay marriage law.

WCT: As I understand it, you had conversations with some lawmakers about supporting this bill.

Lisa Madigan: Yes, throughout session, and even in particular the last several days when people were hopeful that we were only a handful of votes away. Then, it started looking as if it was far more than that because some members of the legislature had been put under so much pressure that while at some point they may have indicated a possible willingness to be supportive, they were now indicating essentially the opposite. So I spent many hours on the phone that Thursday and Friday with legislatures, reassuring them of several things.

One is, from my experience being in the state Senate, you end up having to vote on controversial bills, but once they're passed, much of the controversy dies down [and] goes away, and everybody moves forward—certain threats that may have been made to be or concerns that they may have had about elections that maybe did not need to be so concerned about that.

WCT: Do you remember the first moment that you knew the bill might be in trouble?

Lisa Madigan: I think I got a call probably that Wednesday, maybe it was Thursday before the end of session [Friday]. I think it was late in the game. Like many people, we had been doing a lot of work. We were very hopeful. My understanding was we never had a firm 60 votes. We were close and the momentum was going the right way, and it really turned.

WCT: Obviously, there has been a lot of anger over this, even at supportive representatives. Do you think that anger is fair, and how do you feel that some of that has been directed as you as the daughter of Speaker Madigan?

Lisa Madigan: I think anger is understandable. Everybody who was working toward passage of this bill was certainly disappointed, upset that it did not have the votes to pass at the end of session. So, I can understand anger. I think the useful way to channel that anger is into working harder and assuring ourselves that we do get commitments from representatives that we will vote for this bill when it is called. I don't think that anger for anger's sake is useful at the end of the day. But, again, I understand that there are a lot of people who are very disappointed, myself included, that the votes weren't there to pass it at the end of session.

WCT: Do you have any plans for Pride?

Lisa Madigan: We always go to the parade, so we'll be out at the parade.

WCT: Is there anything you want to add?

Lisa Madigan: This is something I have been supportive of ever since I ran for public office. I put a little bit of in because I remember commenting on this when we signed the civil unions bill a number of years ago that it took a very, very long time for the Human Rights Act to be amended to include sexual orientation as a protected class. Larry McKeon [the state's first out gay rep] was one of my state representatives. I remember the work that he did on this to amend the Human Rights Act. I remember the disappointment and the frustration and anger that was directed at him in years that it didn't pass.

We're always in a battle over something, and what pays off ultimately is perseverance and developing relationships and connections. We will pass marriage equality in Illinois. It may not happen fast enough for a lot of people, but it is coming.


facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily
agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here.
Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you
stay on this page, the more you help us.

Arkansas, Mississippi have marriage bans overturned 2014-11-26
Toni Preckwinkle announces funding for Restorative Justice Programs 2014-11-26
Ald. Tunney receives award from Thresholds 2014-11-26
Federal Judge strikes down Mississippi marriage ban 2014-11-26
Winning Marriage book event, Library exhibit explores marriage 2014-11-24
Emanuel honors Harold Washington 2014-11-24
World news: Malaysian insurer; Ian Thorpe's shame; Nepal survey 2014-11-24
Congresswoman's trans son; HRC co-founder arrested 2014-11-24
Study: Public support for LGBT rights up in last three decades 2014-11-24
HRC condemns passage of anti-LGBT law in The Gambia 2014-11-21
Frerichs prevails in treasurer's race 2014-11-20
U.S. Supreme Court clears way for SC same-sex marriage 2014-11-20
Federal judge: Montana's anti-equal marriage rule unconstitutional 2014-11-19
Marriage begins Thursday at noon in South Carolina 2014-11-19
UN tackles conversion therapy; Farrell's letter; Pope Francis 2014-11-19
Veteran killed; Perry disrupted; Collins honored 2014-11-19
ASK LAMBDA LEGAL Veterans' marriage benefits 2014-11-18
PASSAGES Trans lesbian author Leslie Feinberg dies 2014-11-17
Michigan says gay marriages void after appellate decision 2014-11-16
Court denies South Dakota's motion to dismiss marriage suit 2014-11-14
Former Chicago Mayor Byrne dies 2014-11-14
Lambda, ACLU ask Supreme Court to review Ohio marriage cases 2014-11-14
Federal Judge Strikes Down South Carolina Marriage Ban 2014-11-12
Local groups, individuals react to election results 2014-11-12
Trans activist Monica James to address UN on police violence 2014-11-12
Politics: Guide to the gays; groups congratulate Rauner 2014-11-12
Marriage now allowed in Kansas; Elton's foundation's grants 2014-11-12
Ellen's show in Asia; OutGames' campaign; 2018 Gay Games 2014-11-11
Putin is The Advocate's 'Person of the Year' 2014-11-07
6th Circuit upholds marriage bans: Tenn., Ohio, Mich. and Ky. 2014-11-06
Meeks, Huberman and Poshard among transition team members 2014-11-06
Lambda sues Social Security on behalf of gay Chicago widower 2014-11-06
Missouri marriage ban ruled unconstitutional 2014-11-06
AFC congratulates the governor-elect, urges policy, funding continuity 2014-11-05
Quinn wins city vote, but Rauner strong in many wards 2014-11-05
Marriage Equality USA releases updated map 2014-11-05
LGBT races across nation: mixed results 2014-11-05
Crafty Broads makes weddings manageable 2014-11-05
BOOK REVIEW The Marriage Act: The Risk I Took... 2014-11-05
Photo book documents 1980s same-sex couples 2014-11-05





Copyright © 2014 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 

LGBT activist Ouma on work, Tanzania and future hopes
 
Theater, dance, music news and events
 
Having HIV/AIDS: Fighting stigma
 
Afraid of Dark to premiere at Chicago Cultural Center
 
In the Life: Nicole Bashor
 
Windy City Times Current DownloadNightspots Current DownloadQueercast Current Download
Windy City Media Group BlogsJoin Our Email List!Donate Now
Sponsor


Sponsor

  News Index   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds     AIDS @ 32       Marriage
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime



About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video      News Videos      Nightspots Videos      Entertainment Videos      Queercast Videos      Comedy Videos     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.