The Illinois Legislative Black Caucus practically united behind SB1716, the landmark civil unions legislation that passed the Senate today and passed the House on Tuesday. Of the 27 Black legislators in Springfield, there were only two "no" votes—and one belonged to State Sen. and Rev. James Meeks, the Chicago mayoral candidate and outspoken anti-gay mega-church pastor.
In today's Senate vote, Meeks was the only one of the Senate's 8 Black members to vote NO. All others voted YES.
Meeks, who has called homosexuality "an evil sickness", opposed Illinois' LGBT non-discrimination legislation and was the only African-American in the Illinois Senate and House to vote against the bill.