Less than two months after the passage of same-sex marriage in Maryland, Washington, and Maine, Illinois is looking to join the progressive movement to provide equal right to all. Last week, two prominent Republican Party members, Pat Brady and Kenneth Mehlman, declared their support for Illinois’ Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act.

Chairman of the Illinois Republican Party Pat Brady said last Wednesday that the bill had his “full support” as an individual, and he is now urging his fellow Republican Party members to vote in favor of it. The legislation is currently pending in Springfield.

“More and more Americans understand that if two people want to make a lifelong commitment to each other, government should not stand in their way,” said Brady. “Giving gay and lesbian couples the freedom to get married honors the best conservative principles. It strengthens families and reinforces a key Republican value—that the law should treat all citizens equally.”

Kenneth Mehlman came out in 2008 and has been perhaps the biggest LGBT advocate in the Republican Party since then. As a former RNC chairman and campaign manager for former President George W. Bush, Kenneth Mehlman holds significant political sway and helped the movements in Washington, Maine, and Maryland pass in the recent election.

“Republicans should support the freedom to marry in Illinois, consistent with our core conservative belief in freedom and liberty for all,” Mehlman said on Wednesday. “Allowing civil marriage for same-sex couples will cultivate community stability, encourage fidelity and commitment, and foster strong family values.”

See our previous profile on Kenneth Mehlman here.

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