The Illinois Senate on Thursday is expected to advance a bill legalizing same-sex marriage to a vote in the state House of Representatives, the last remaining obstacle to marriage equality in the land of Lincoln.

The historic vote could come as early as 11 a.m. Thursday, according to the Windy City Times, and marriage equality proponents are very confident in their odds.

The bill was advanced last week by the state Senate Executive Committee, for the second time. Following that vote, the powerful Illinois Senate President John Cullerton said he, too, was confident the bill will be approved by the full Senate in its Valentine’s Day vote and, in his State of the State address, Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn urged both chambers of the state General Assembly to approve the bill so that he can sign into law.

The state House of Representatives is considered to be more conservative than the state Senate and those opposed to the bill are also ramping up their efforts. Downstate, Springfield Bishop Thomas John Paprocki issued a screed urging that Catholics who “propose or promote the legal establishment of marriage as something other than the union of one man and one woman harm the common good of society.”

If Illinois moves to legalize same-sex marriage, it will become the tenth marriage equality U.S. state. The state has had civil unions available for same-sex couples since June 2011.

The vote on #ILSB10 could happen as early as 11AM CST tomorrow. #IL4M #ILequality #Twill #ILove #p2 #lgbtq #marriageequality

— Justin Gibson (@JGibsonDem)

February 13, 2013

h/t: Huffington Post

Today a federal court ordered an immediate marriage license for a lesbian couple in Illinois.

“Vernita is terminally ill and she wishes to marry the woman she loves before she dies—and now she won’t have to wait another day.” -Marriage Project Director Camilla Taylor

ILOVE MARRIAGE VICTORY! Illinois becomes state 15!

“It’s a fabulous day for Illinois! Same-sex couples and their children can celebrate a new era of equality in the Land of Lincoln. With the 5th most populous state in the union embracing the freedom to marry, we have moved much closer to bringing equality to all Americans.”