Emboldened by voter approval in three states earlier this month, proponents of an Illinois constitution amendment to restrict marriage to heterosexuals say they're gearing up to try again in 2010, the State-Journal Register of Springfield reported.
A group called "Protect Marriage Illinois" fell short of collecting the needed 270,000 signatures, which is 8 percent of the number of people who voted for governor during the last election, in time to get an advisory measure on Illinois’ fall ballot. The proposal called for amending the state’s constitution to declare “the union of one man and one woman in marriage shall be the only agreement recognized as a marriage or similar union for any purpose.”
The General Assembly would have to vote to place the amendment itself on the ballot.
Illinois, as well as 27 other states in the union, already prohibit same-sex marriage, but amendment advocates say that’s not enough.
Since May, when courts in California legalized same-sex marriage, thousands of homosexual couples there have wed. Proposition 8 in that state amended the constitution to say that "only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized", but Attorney General Jerry Brown said he believes the same-sex marriages conducted between May and November would probably not be invalidated.
Since the election, dozens of protests have been held across the country. Last Saturday, thousands of protesters flooded Chicago's Federal Plaza as part of an 80-city movement against the California ammendment.