Alexi Giannoulias, the (ostensibly straight) Illinois state treasurer who’s running for U.S. Senate against Rep. Mark Krik, has made no secret that he’s courting the gay vote. So consider us unsurprised to learn today Giannoulias signed an executive order granting the same-sex domestic partners of his office’s employees the same benefits — including family and bereavement leave — as their straight married counterparts.
Though its impact will be small (there are only 180 total employees in Giannoulias’ office), it’s a very nice gesture, and one of those “No duh, this is how it’s supposed to be” moments.
But these gay staffers already enjoyed the same health care options as married heteros — let’s not pretend expanding the rest of the benefits umbrella isn’t a politically motivated campaign move by the Senate hopeful. Let’s also not pretend that we going to spend terribly much effort caring about the why.