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Illinois To Become 15th State To Legalize Same-Sex Marriage

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Will be updated further.

Updated 9:39 a.m. Nov. 6:

The final step to make same-sex marriage legal in Illinois, Gov. Quinn's signature, will come this month at a big event, Illinois Public Radio's Amanda Vinicky reports:

Same-sex couples won't be able to actually tie the knot in Illinois until June 1, when the legislation takes effect.

Update 5:05 p.m.

The Illinois Senate has voted to legalize same sex marriage in the state. The bill now goes to Gov. Pat Quinn who is expected to sign it. Quinn said that his state was "on the right side of history" with the House's vote earlier today.

In a statement Quinn said “Illinois is a place that embraces all people and today, we are an example for the nation.”

Earlier story:

The Illinois House has approved legislation allowing same-sex couples to marry in the state.

The vote 61-54 vote sends the measure back to the Senate for minor changes to a version it approved on Valentine's Day. Gov. Pat Quinn says he'll sign it.

Fourteen states plus Washington D.C., allow same-sex marriage. Most recently, New Jersey, Minnesota and Rhode Island have allowed it.

The historic vote in Illinois came after months of arduous lobbying by gay-rights advocates, but the bill was never called for a House vote earlier this year because the sponsor said there weren't enough votes. Proponents say momentum had been building, especially as the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a provision of the federal Defense of Marriage Act.

Opponents say marriage should remain between a man and woman.