ILLINOIS: NOM Fails To Unseat Three GOP Same-Sex Marriage Supporters
When the Illinois state House passed a bill to legalize gay marriage last fall, just three out of 47 Republicans voted for it. On Tuesday, none of them lost. State Rep. Tom Cross (R) cruised to a 14-point victory in the primary for state treasurer while state Rep. Ed Sullivan (R) easily won renomination in his district. The third, state Rep. Ron Sandack (R), narrowly edged out his opponent by fewer than 200 votes, according to an unofficial tally. The close margin could mean the race goes to a recount. Sandack and Sullivan both faced pressure from third-party groups looking to oust them over their gay marriage votes. In Sandack's case, the issue became a central focus. Had the three Republicans lost, it would have probably given pause to Republicans considering backing gay marriage in other states where the matter comes up in the future. But given two decisive wins and a third tentative victory, gay rights advocates have a lot to be happy about a day after the election.The Windy City Times had threatened legal action against the Illinois Family Institute for using their above photo of Sandack in an anti-gay flyer. Image via New Civil Rights Movement.
UPDATE: Freedom To Marry reacts.
Last night, Illinois Republican lawmakers who voted for the freedom to marry batted a thousand in the GOP primaries. Their victories--three out of three--in spite of desperate and ugly attacks from opponents of equality show that using marriage as a wedge issue no longer works and that backing conservative principles of freedom, family, and individual liberty will prevail. Our side was smart and strategic in these races and stood up for those who stood with us. Thanks to Equality Illinois and the Illinois Unity PAC for their leadership.