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Same-sex marriage supporters launch push in Minn. with rally at state capitol

Same-sex marriage supporters launch push in Minn. with rally at state capitol

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Hundreds of same-sex marriage supporters packed Minnesota’s Capitol rotunda on Thursday as they start a push for its legalization by the Legislature.

No official count of the crowd was immediately available but it appeared to easily exceed 1,000 people.

Hundreds gathered at the State Capitol Thursday, Feb. 14, 2013 in St. Paul, Minn., where supporters of gay marriage called for Minnesota lawmakers to legalize gay marriage.
Photo: Jim Mone, Associated Press
Photo: Jim Mone, Associated Press

Speakers included DFL lawmakers and religious leaders who say last fall’s statewide defeat of a constitutional gay marriage ban cleared the way to repeal the existing state law that bars same-sex couples from marrying.

Gov. Mark Dayton restated his support for same-sex marriage rights in his State of the State speech, and DFL legislative leaders have been increasingly open to the prospect of taking up the issue later in the current session.

Gay marriage opponents say the ban’s defeat doesn’t prove widespread support for legalizing it. They plan their own Capitol rally March 7.

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