Senator Scott Dibble is the sponsor of Minnesota's same sex marriage law that passed the Senate on Monday in an important victory for marriage equality in the Midwest. Pictured above with his partner, Richard Levya, Sen. Dibble was part of a Democrat-led legislature that made the Land of 10,000 Lakes the 12th state in the U.S. to allow same sex marriage.
Based on this short but festive Vine from Jake Loesch it is clear that Minnesotans will be celebrating today.
The bill allowing same sex marriage passed the Minnesota House last Thursday May 9, by a 75-59 vote and passed the Senate today by a 37-30 vote. This is a stark shift from just two years ago. In 2011, the state was riled by a Republican-controlled legislature's amendment to ban gay marriage in the state permanently.
Voters eliminated that amendment on the ballot in 2012 on the same day as voters in Maine, Maryland, and Washington adopted gay marriage in their states. The Minnesota bill passed the Democrat-led Senate today and is expected be signed into law by Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton as early as tomorrow.
"I've never seen any public policy issue change in public sentiment as quickly, as dramatically, as this one has changed," said Tom Horner, a Twin Cities public relations executive and former candidate for governor, to Pioneer Press.
The acceptance of gay marriage has ballooned over the last two years as more and more people have come to accept it as a part of the human spectrum. The Pew Research Center shows how quickly the change has occured within the American public:
However this is not just an American phenomenon. Th worldwide trend of acceptance is clearly evident given the recent wave of policy and legal victories for marriage equality supporters. These are all policy changes to have occured in 2013 alone:
- a transgender woman's marriage will be recognized in Hong Kong,
- France legalized same sex marriage,
- 14 of Brazil's 27 states now allow same sex marriage,
- New Zealand passed the law in April with a wide majority,
- Britain's MPs voted for the marriage equality bill, and it is poised to pass the House of Lors before the end of the year
Opposition remains in the U.S. and even around the world, but it is unlikely to overcome the momentum generated in the last several months. France had a violent backlash to the legalization of same sex marriage but it stemmed from a small right-wing section of the population, and was quickly condemned by the larger public.
Even here at home, the tide has turned as the manliest of sportsmen and pimpest of rappers are supporting marriage equality. Hopefully, the Supreme Court is paying attention to these developments and will make the right decisions come June for DOMA and Prop 8.