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updated: 9/23/2013 8:27 AM

Dem leader urges Illinois House to OK gay marriage

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Associated Press

The second-ranking Democrat in the Illinois House says the debate over same-sex marriage "now has an economic component that we cannot ignore."

Majority Leader Barbara Flynn Currie sent a letter to all House members saying it's time to approve legislation legalizing same-sex marriage.

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Currie says several new reasons to support the bill have surfaced since lawmakers adjourned in May without voting on the measure. Among them is an effort by the Minneapolis mayor to entice same-sex couples to get married in Minnesota.

Currie says the wedding industry is big business and Illinois is losing millions to states like Minnesota that allow same-sex marriage. She says it's also about ensuring everyone has the right to demonstrate their love.

Opponents say marriage should be between a man and a woman.

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