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Illinois Unites relaunches efforts to pass marriage-equality bill

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- Illinois Unites for Marriage today announced a revamped campaign to pass freedom to marry legislation in the state, where a bill stalled in the House in the previous session after passing in the Senate.

The relaunch includes the hiring of John Kohlhepp, a longtime organizer and lobbyist, to run a $2 million campaign that will include statewide public outreach.

Richard Carlbom, director of state campaigns at Freedom to Marry, said organizers are determined to win in Illinois.

“It’s a new day in Illinois, with a fresh strategy to bring the freedom to marry to all loving and committed couples in the state. In the wake of historic rulings for marriage at the Supreme Court, Freedom to Marry and our partners are reenergized for this new phase of the campaign, and more committed than ever to following through for the win. With smart mobilization at Illinois Unites and continued leadership in the Legislature, we’ll make Illinois the next marriage state this session,” he said.

Freedom to Marry remains an active member of Illinois Unites for Marriage, providing strategic and messaging guidance and managing its online work. In addition to Illinois, the group is working to win marriage in Hawaii, New Jersey and Oregon in 2013-14 and are also laying the groundwork to win six more states by 2015-16, through a mix of Arizona, Colorado, Michigan, Nevada, New Mexico, Ohio and Pennsylvania. Click HERE to find out more about the $100 million pathway to marriage equality victories nationwide.