(DFL House Speaker Paul Thissen and DFL House Majority Leader Erin Murphy speak with reporters about same-sex marriage bill. MPR Photo/Tom Scheck)
A spokesman for the House DFL caucus says Thursday is the day the House will vote on a bill that legalizes same-sex marriage in Minnesota. The House Rules Committee will vote today to put the bill on Thursday’s House Calendar.
The move is a signal that there is enough support to pass the bill, because DFL House Speaker Paul Thissen and House Majority Leader Erin Murphy have repeatedly said that they will not bring the bill up for a vote unless it can pass.
DFL Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk has said there are enough yes votes in the Senate to pass the bill. Gov. Dayton has said he would sign it if the bill reaches his desk.
Groups on both sides of the issue have been lobbying rural DFLers and suburban Republicans in the past few weeks. Several rural Democrats have said in the past few days that they have decided to vote for the bill.
Minnesotans United, a group lobbying for the bill’s passage, will hold an interfaith vigil on Wednesday night to show support for same-sex marriage.
“We are confident that we have the votes to pass it,” said House Majority Leader Erin Murphy, DFL-St. Paul.
She said DFL members, particularly in rural areas, have been talking with people in their districts and supporters of the bill.
“They have searched their conscience…and they are prepared to take the question up,” she said. “I hope this is a bipartisan issue but at this point I don’t have any clear commitment from Republicans.”
First-term Rep. Shannon Savick, DFL Wells, said she’s voting for the bill.
She said her brother is gay, and she didn’t think twice about the vote.
“To me, it’s standing on principles,” she said. “I watched my brother being discriminated against when I was younger. I just can’t see why he can’t marry the person that he loves. I did.”
“It could cost me the election because I come from a really conservative area, but I’m hoping I do enough good in other areas that they will overlook that,” Savick said.