Emanuel says the time for marriage equality is now.
Tuesday, the mayor listed his legislative priorities. Pension reform was No. 1, followed by a casino for Chicago and gay marriage.
Emanuel says the state has taken the lead in civil unions. There was a ceremony in June of last year at Millennium Park where more than 30 couples took part.
The mayor said he plans to be very involved in the effort.
"I've been in touch with leaders, including State Representative Greg Harris, State Representative Deb Mell and leaders in both chambers, so Illinois will now take the next step in making sure that our values are reflected in our laws," said Emanuel.
Gay marriage is now legal in nine states and the District of Columbia.