Marriage-equality advocates had been hoping for another big win, just weeks before the Supreme Court is scheduled to announce its decisions in the two gay-rights cases argued earlier this year. Instead, they were badly disappointed, if not stunned. It had looked since the beginning of the year as though Illinois would be the next big state—the thirteenth, and the second most populous after New York—to adopt same-sex marriage. It was anticipated as a final reminder that the country was headed inexorably toward marriage equality, right before the Supreme Court’s landmark rulings, expected on or before June 27th. But last Friday, proving that it is still extremely difficult to get a gay civil-rights bill through a legislative body, the Illinois House, controlled seventy-one to forty-seven by Democrats, adjourned without taking the expected vote on the marriage bill.