May the gaying of the Midwest begin. Today, the Minnesota Senate gave final approval to a bill making it the 12th state — the third in the past 11 days — to legalize same-sex marriage with a vote of 37-30.
The North Star State joins Iowa in being the only state to recognize gay marriage in the region. Looks like someone’s jealous of New England.
Minnesota has made leaps and bounds in the last few months, thanks in part to a dramatically different state legislature. Two years ago, Republicans controlled both chambers and bypassed the governor to propose a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. In an historical popular vote, Minnesota became the first state to defeat an anti-gay marriage ballot initiative.
Since then, lawmakers, activists and everyday Minnesotans have used the momentum to arrive at today’s vote in the Senate, where Democrats hold a 39-28 majority. However, the House of Representatives passed the bill last week, surpassing the 68 votes it needed thanks to bipartisan support.
The bill now goes to Governor Mark Dayton, who will sign it into law during a ceremony tomorrow at 5 p.m. The law will take effect August 1.