Relaymedia

Minnesota Lawmakers Approve Gay Marriage, Governor Pledges to Sign

( [email protected] ) May 13, 2013 06:04 AM EDT
Minnesota’s state Senate on Monday approved a bill that would make Minnesota the 12th U.S. state to legalize same-sex marriage upon the governor's signing on Tuesday.
Hundreds of people gathered in the Minnesota Capitol on Monday, singing, waving signs and shouting loud enough to be heard inside the Senate chamber as the debate went on before the vote on same-sex marriage. Jim Mone/Associated Press

Minnesota’s state Senate on Monday approved a bill that would make Minnesota the 12th U.S. state to legalize same-sex marriage upon the governor's signing on Tuesday.

The vote was 37-30. The State House of Representatives voted 75-59 on Thursday, and Gov. Mark Dayton, a Democrat said through his office that he would sign it.

If this bill is signed, Minnesota would become the third state in the nation to approve gay marriage in May after Rhode Island and Delaware.

The law would take effect on August 1.

Senator Carla Nelson, a Republican, opposed the measure, saying it “denies the right of a different opinion,” according to New York Times.

“We must respect religious freedom at the same time that we advance rights,” she said, the Times reported.

Minnesota will join Iowa as the only other Midwestern state to permit gay marriage and the first to do so through legislation. Iowa has permitted same-sex marriage since 2009 under a state Supreme Court order.

In November, Maine, Maryland and Washington states became the first states to approve same-sex marriage at the ballot box.

Same-sex marriage is also legal in Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, Vermont and New Hampshire. The District of Columbia also has legalized same-sex marriage.

Illinois state senators approved a bill in February, but the measure has not been voted on in the full House.