Minnesota Becomes 12th US State with Equal Marriage Laws

Marriage Equality Advocates Celebrate in the Minnesota State House

Minnesota becomes the 12th state in the US to adopt marriage equality into law today, just six months after voters defeated a constitutional amendment to define marriage heterosexually. In both campaigns, Catholic advocates and opponents played a central role in shaping the marriage equality conversation.

After a successful House vote last week, the Senate voted 37-30 yesterday to pass the bill. Legislators now send the bill to Governor Mark Dayton who is expected to sign it this afternoon. The New York Times reports on the victory, and turnaround, in Minnesota:

“In a way, Monday’s vote was a startling shift in the conversation in this state. For much of 2012, Minnesotans had been debating an amendment to the state Constitution that would have done the opposite — define marriage as between a man and a woman…Minnesotans in November rejected the amendment and sent majorities of Democrats to both chambers of the State Legislature, setting off an intense new push to legalize same-sex marriage.

“‘That whole constitutional amendment backfired on them,’ Amy Britain, 46, said Monday…She said it proved that Minnesotans, like many Americans, had changed their views on marriage.”

At Queering the Church, Terence Weldon notes the importance of Catholic efforts by Minnesotans involved in the struggle:

“This is not new: Catholics have been prominent in marriage victories elsewhere, as have other faith groups…But it is true that for a long time, it appeared that church groups were overwhelmingly opposed, and only fairly recently has faith–based support become reasonably widespread. Minnesota, I suspect, is one example where the religious support has been particularly telling…

“I’m not going to even attempt to offer a run-down of all the people and groups who have contributed, or how. But for some indication of just how much there has been, cross to yesterday’s post at The Wild Reed, ‘Drawing the Circle Wide‘, written in anticipation of today’s success and giving an extensive list of some of those people, with pictures, whose hard work has now paid off. Then cross to today’s post at Sensus Fidelium, ‘It’ll be legal by August 1st‘, where you can read more about the legwork done by Catholics for Marriage Equality MN…”

Leading up to the 2012 elections, marriage equality advocates fought fiercely to defeat an anti-gay amendment being voted on while the Catholic hierarchy spoke and spent heavily to write discrimination into law. Today, once the governor signs marriage equality into law, all Minnesotans will be able to marry while religious liberty protections remain in place.

–Bob Shine, New Ways Ministry

7 replies
  1. Larry Quirk
    Larry Quirk says:

    I have often wondered why the hierarchy would spend milions of dollars to intrude into civil law on the issue of gay marriage when those funds would be better spent on what should be their real mission of helping the poor etc. I have also wondered why they spend all this money on the gay marriage issue and not be as strident on other issues like health care and poverty program cut backs etc. The answer for me is the church’s unrelenting focus on sex and the need these celebite bitter men have to control it. Now they realize that the Catholics still in the pews have left them behind and vote with their consciences on an issue of love not of sex.

  2. ermadurk
    ermadurk says:

    This is such an inspirational article–every bit of it. I especially like the “litany prayer, If you believe…..” I certainly want to pass this on. Thank you.

  3. Friends
    Friends says:

    Larry Quirk writes: “The answer for me is the church’s unrelenting focus on sex and the need these celibate bitter men have to control it.” BINGO!!! They know NOTHING about intimate human love, and yet they presume a divine right to “straw boss” and invasively control the intimacy of bonded loving Christian couples. No wonder people of faith — including many cradle Catholics — are completely fed up with the insulting behavior of so many top-level bishops and Cardinals.


Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] legalization of marriage equality for lesbian and gay couples in Rhode Island, New Jersey, Delaware, Minnesota, Illinois, Hawaii, France, and Great Britain. […]

  2. […] voters not only defeated a proposed amendment similar to Indiana’s proposal, but then passed marriage equality this past spring. Crookston joins the Diocese of Springfield, Illinois and others who act against […]

  3. […] name to “Catholics Celebrating Marriage Equality,” reflecting that the state recently adopted a marriage law for gay and lesbian couples and the Supreme Court’s recent […]

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