Same-sex marriage bill signed; thousands cheer at Capitol
by Conrad Wilson, Minnesota Public Radio
May 15, 2013
ST. PAUL, Minn. — Many gay and lesbian couples in Minnesota are looking forward to Aug. 1, when the law legalizing same-sex marriage goes into effect.
Gov. Mark Dayton signed the bill Tuesday afternoon as more than 6,000 people gathered on the steps of the state Capitol to witness the unusual outdoor ceremony.
Among the crowd were two middle-aged men, standing arm in arm in the shade. Paul Mendez and Ross Algaard met in Minneapolis in 2004. Algaard said even though they got married in Iowa in 2010, “We’re excited for Aug. 1 to arrive and finally have it recognized here in our resident state. So we’re really excited about everything.”
As the time passed, the crowd grew. Rainbow flags and signs supporting marriage equality dotted the tightly packed crowd. Lawmakers began emerging from the Capitol, to the cheers of the crowd. They lined up behind a desk where the bill was to be signed. And then Dayton joined them.
“What a day for Minnesota,” he said.