Minnesota’s House Civil Law Committee voted 10-7 to pass the state’s marriage equality legislation on Tuesday night, following a 5-3 vote by the Senate Judiciary Committee earlier that afternoon.
The bill will now head to the Senate floor for a full body vote. Despite the rapidity of the previous two passings, the full Senate is not expected to vote until later in the session.
Governor Mark Dayton said in December of last year that he would sign a marriage equality bill if it reached his desk.
In November, Minnesota became the first US state to defeat an anti-gay marriage ballot measure.
“The passage of this comprehensive legislation today signals a turning point in our state’s history,” said Minnesotans United Campaign Manager Richard Carlbom in a statement. Carlbom stated. “It is time to extend the freedom to marry to the thousands of loving and committed same-sex couples who ask for nothing more than to be treated fairly and equally by their government.’
This is the first such legislation, defining marriage between two people, not just man and woman, to have passed a legislative committee in Minnesota. The bill was ushered through by sponsor Senator Scott Dibble.
“We’re incredibly excited by the progress,” State Legislative Director of the Human Rights Campaign, Sarah Warbelow, who testified in favor of the bill, said to 429Magazine. “It’s just amazing to have partners on the ground like Project 515, OutFront Minnesota and Minnesota United.” Each of the three organizations campaigned to progress marriage equality in the state.