Illinois' Same-Sex Couples Sue For Right To Marry

on May 30 2012 11:24 AM
Same-sex female and male wedding cake toppers are seen outside the East Los Angeles County Recorder's Office on Valentine's Day during a news event for National Freedom to Marry Week in Los Angeles, California February 14, 2012. Same-sex marriage has not
Photo Credit: Reuters. Same-sex female and male wedding cake toppers are seen outside the East Los Angeles County Recorder's Office on Valentine's Day during a news event for National Freedom to Marry Week in Los Angeles, California February 14, 2012. Same-sex marriage has not been restored in California though earlier this month the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit declared California's ban on same-sex marriage, known as Proposition 8, unconstitutional. A 2008 California Supreme Court decision allowed same-sex couples to marry until Proposition 8 was passed.

The American Civil Liberties Union and LGBT organization Lambda Legal will file lawsuits Wednesday to bring same-sex marriage to Illinois, the Associated Press reported.

Representing more than two dozen gay and lesbian couples, the lawsuits will challenge a 1996 state law banning same-sex marriage for violating the state Constitution's equality and due process clauses, according to the AP. Illinois currently allows civil unions that fall short of providing the same rights as married couples.

Should the Illinois Supreme Court ultimately back the couples, the state would be the fourth to legalize same-sex marriage through the court system, following Massachusetts, Connecticut and Iowa. Six states and Washington, D.C., allow same-sex marriage, while laws in several states that opened marriage to gays and lesbians have yet to take effect.

More News from IBT MEDIA