Illinois Rep. Deb Mell Announces Engagment On House Floor
Yesterday Illinois state Rep. Deb Mell announced her engagement to her female partner on the floor of the state legislature.
"Two weeks ago I asked Christin Baker to marry me, and she said yes," Mell told the assembled legislature, eliciting warm applause from her colleagues. Of course, she won't be able to be married in Illinois, as same-sex marriages aren't recognized in this state. With that in mind, she recognized it as a moment of mixed emotions. "While this is a happy day, and one to celebrate, it is also bittersweet," Mell said. "Life can be tough even on a good day, so I believe if you find that person who you want to spend the rest of your life with, regardless if you're gay or straight it should be honored and celebrated." In a stirring and emotional show of support, seven fellow legislators rose after Mell to congratulate her and Baker on their engagement. Rep. Sara Feigenholtz, from Chicago, teared up as she remembered the early stages of Mell's and Baker's relationship, and vowed to fight for marriage equality in Illinois.Dell plans to marry in Iowa. Here are the clips of her speech and of the reaction of her fellow legislators.