Mar 12, 2013 at 3:14 pm
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - A Minnesota Senate committee has approved a bill that would legalize gay marriage in the state.
The bill was endorsed Tuesday on a 5 to 3 party-line vote in the Senate Judiciary Committee with all Democrats in favor and all Republicans opposed. It now heads to the floor, where a final vote is not expected until much later in session.
It was the first time a state legislative committee has backed marriage rights for gay couples. A state House panel was expected to take its own vote later Tuesday evening.
The Democratic-led Legislature is pressing ahead with the marriage bill after voters defeated a constitutional amendment last November that would have fortified an existing ban on same-sex marriage.
Gov. Mark Dayton says he will sign it if it reaches him.
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