New & Noteworthy:


Illinois is the 21st U.S. state, admitted to the Union on December 3, 1818. Its most populous city is Chicago, and the state capitol is located in Springfield.

LGBT Rights in Illinois: Same-sex marriage becomes legal in Illinois on June 1, 2014, under a bill passed in the state legislature and signed by Gov. Pat Quinn on Nov. 20, 2013. Illinois has protected LGBT persons from discrimination since 2006, based on legislation enacted in 2005. Illinois has recognized hate crimes against lesbian, gay, bisexual, or heterosexual persons since 2001. The law does not protect attacks based on gender identity as such, but gender identity cases can be prosecuted as perceived sexual orientation cases since the state criminalizes attacks based on one's actual or perceived sexual orientation. The state permits adoption by gay individuals or partners, including second-parent adoptions.

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

Thursday, March 20, 2014
Illinois state capitol building in Springfield.
Three Republican lawmakers who crossed the aisle last year to to vote in favor of Illinois' marriage equality law, were all victorious in their primary elections Tuesday. [...]

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U.S. Congress hopeful who said God punishes gay marriage with bad weather, wins primary

Wednesday, March 19, 2014
Daily HeraldSusanne Atanus
CHICAGO -- U.S. Congress hopeful Susanne Atanus, who said in January that God has put tornadoes and diseases such as autism and dementia on earth as punishment for gay rights and legalized abortions, won a narrow victory in Tuesday's GOP primary. [...]

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Ill. gay rights group donates to GOP lawmakers who supported gay marriage

Thursday, March 13, 2014
CHICAGO -- An LGBT rights advocacy group in Illinois is bolstering the campaign funds of two Republican lawmakers. Equality Illinois' political action committee says it plans to put $150,000 into the campaigns of candidates that support same-sex marriage before Tuesday's primary. [...]

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Three more Illinois counties issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples

Thursday, March 6, 2014
While many Illinois counties are waiting until the state's new same-sex marriage becomes law in June and others are waiting for legal advice, the list of counties that will start issuing the licenses immediately is growing. [...]

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Most Illinois clerks in no rush to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples

Wednesday, March 5, 2014
A program and an Illinois rainbow flag is placed on a seat for spectators who witnessed Gov. Pat Quinn sign the marriage bill into law.
CHICAGO -- County clerks around Illinois say they won't start issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples immediately as Attorney General Lisa Madigan said this week they have the right to do. [...]

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Illinois AG: All county clerks can issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples

Tuesday, March 4, 2014
Illinois' Lisa Madigan took a similar stand on 2012 against the state's gay marriage ban, but before the case could go to trial, the Legislature legalized same-sex marriage.
CHICAGO — Attorney General Lisa Madigan on Tuesday told an Illinois county clerk that he and others around the state have the right to immediately issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Madigan issued the guidance in response to a question from Macon County Clerk Stephen Bean, who questioned the legal [...]

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Cook County, Ill., issues 258 marriage licenses to same-sex couples

Tuesday, March 4, 2014
CHICAGO — Cook County issued 258 marriage licenses to same-sex couples in the first week it was allowed to do so by a court ruling. [...]

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Third Illinois county plans to begin issuing marriage licenses to gay couples

Thursday, February 27, 2014
John Dixon, APMarissa Meli, left, and Laura Meli were the first same-sex couple to receive a marriage license at the Champaign County Champaign County Clerks office in Urbana, Ill., on Wednesday Feb. 26, 2014.
BLOOMINGTON, Ill. -- McLean County, Ill., Clerk Kathy Michael says she hopes to be issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples by the middle of next week, months ahead of the June 1 date when Illinois' marriage equality law is scheduled to take effect. [...]

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Second Illinois county begins issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples

Wednesday, February 26, 2014
URBANA, Ill.-- A second Illinois county has begun issuing same-sex marriage licenses ahead of a new state law that takes effect June 1. [...]

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Cook County, Ill., issues more than 80 marriage licenses to same-sex couples

Tuesday, February 25, 2014
M. Spencer Green, APCharlie Gurion, center, and David Wilk hold up their marriage license as Cook County Clerk David Orr, left looks on Friday, Feb. 21, 2014, in Chicago.
CHICAGO — More than 80 same-sex couples have gotten marriage licenses in Cook County, including some from other Illinois counties who apparently didn't want to wait until gay marriage becomes legal statewide on June 1. [...]

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