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Crowd of demonstrators grows at Minn. capitol ahead of marriage vote

Crowd of demonstrators grows at Minn. capitol ahead of marriage vote

House convenes at 12 p.m. CDT.
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ST. PAUL, Minn. — Hundreds of people on both sides of the gay marriage issue are expressing their viewpoints at the Minnesota Capitol where the House is expected to cast a historic vote on legislation legalizing same-gender unions.

Demonstrators on both sides of the issue gather outside the Minnesota House chamber to greet lawmakers when they arrive to take up the gay marriage bill at the State Capitol, Thursday, May 9, 2013 in St. Paul, Minn.
Photos: Jim Mone, AP

The demonstrators filled the hallway outside the House chambers Thursday where debate was expected to begin at midday. Supporters of gay marriage, dressed in orange T-shirts, held up signs that read “I Support The Freedom to Marry.” Behind them, opponents held up bright pink signs that simply said “Vote No.”

Security at the Capitol was tighter than usual as the crowd of demonstrators gathered.

House Democratic leaders say they’re confident they have sufficient votes to pass the measure. If successful, the state Senate would take up the legislation on Monday, paving the way for Gov. Mark Dayton to sign it next week.

Developing story, check back for updates.

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UPDATED: Minnesota House stands ready to vote on same-sex marriage bill

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