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25 couples seek ruling in Illinois gay marriage case

BY TAMMY WEBBER, ASSOCIATED PRESS

CHICAGO -- Twenty-five couples who filed a lawsuit challenging Illinois' ban on gay marriage asked a judge on Wednesday to rule quickly in their favor, saying a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision striking down part of a law denying federal benefits to married gay couples creates a new urgency in the state.

Illinois legalized civil unions two years ago, but the recent Supreme Court decision applies only to married gay couples.

Lambda Legal and the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois filed a motion for summary judgment in Cook County Circuit Court. They said Judge Sophia Hall could rule on the motion as soon as Aug. 6, when oral arguments are scheduled on a defense motion to dismiss the lawsuit.

"We will say that we should win as a matter of law" under the state constitution, said Camilla Taylor, Lambda Legal's marriage project director. "Illinois now is the only thing standing between these families and numerous federal rights."

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