Civil-rights veteran Julian Bond and former Chicago Bears linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo have teamed up to urge support for Illinois' gay marriage bill by recording "robo-calls" being sent to residents this week.
"I urge you to support the majority of Illinoisans," Bond, former president of the NAACP, says in an automated message
being sent to African-American communities.
"Gay and lesbian couples have the same values as everyone else: love, commitment, and stable families. They should have the same right to marry as the rest of us."
In his message, Ayanbadejo — who has also played with the Miami Dolphins, Baltimore Ravens, and Atlanta Falcons — introduces himself as "the son of a biracial couple."
"It's time to let the world know that Illinois accepts all people, regardless of who they love," he said.
The calls are designed to put pressure on lawmakers who have been waffling on support of the issue and to heighten awareness of the issue.
The measure, which passed the Senate, is now pending in the House. Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn plans to sign it if it receives House approval.
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