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GOP lawmakers who voted for Illinois gay marriage bill win primary races

Thursday, March 20, 2014
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Three Republican lawmakers who crossed the aisle last year to to vote in favor of Illinoismarriage equality law, were all victorious in their primary elections Tuesday.

Illinois state capitol building in Springfield.

Illinois state capitol building in Springfield.

And according to Equality Illinois, not a single lawmaker – Republican or Democrat – who voted in favor of same-sex marriage lost due to support of the marriage bill.

On the GOP side, State Reps. Tom Cross of Oswego, Ed Sullivan of Mundelein and Ron Sandack of Downers Grove all won their primary bids.

Sandack, a first-term lawmaker and former Downers Grove Mayor, eked out a 153-vote primary victory after conservative political action committees spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in television ads and mailers criticizing him for “getting in bed with the radical left to get re-elected.”

Sullivan also survived a challenge fueled by conservative groups unhappy with his vote for same sex marriage.

And Cross defeated DuPage County Auditor Bob Grogan to be the GOP nominee for state treasurer.

“We put up a historic fight to defend our historic legislative gains. We rallied our allies and took on pretty powerful opponents, but we had to demonstrate that the LGBT community will stand up for those who stand up for us.” said Bernard Cherkasov, CEO of Equality Illinois, the state’s oldest and largest LGBT advocacy group.

“Overwhelmingly, voters nominated candidates who supported the freedom to marry last year and who will help advance LGBT equality in the future,” he said.

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