Minnesota state Rep. Tim Faust (DFL-District 11B) on Thursday said the Bible was no argument against marriage equality for gay and lesbian couples.
"Not too long ago, I probably would have voted 'no' on this bill, but in the past there have been a couple of things that changed my mind on this," Faust, a Lutheran minister, said on the House floor. "The first one is, in the last ten years I've had conversations with hundreds -- and I guess now it is in the thousands -- of people about this issue, and in 99.9 percent of the time the people that are opposed to gay marriage at some point in their discussion they always say, 'My Bible says.'"
"And so if this is the reason or rationale for being opposed to this or why this law is currently in place, the question that keeps going through my mind over and over again is do we as a society have the right to impose our religious beliefs on somebody else?"
He said his own marriage also played a role in his decision to support the legislation.
"Today we have the opportunity to give a part of our population, fellow brothers and sisters of God, the same rights that most of us have taken for granted since the day we knew what the opposite sex was," Faust concluded.
The Minnesota Democrat, who represents a relatively conservative district, had previously been undecided on the issue. Faust attended a demonstration against same-sex marriage in April, but told the crowd he wasn't sure why he was there.
Minnesota representatives voted 75-59 to extend the freedom to marry to same-sex couples on Thursday.
Watch video, uploaded to YouTube by TheUptake, below: