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Minnesota Close To Becoming The 12th To Approve Gay Marriage

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) Four Minnesota House Republicans have broken party ranks to pass a gay marriage bill, with two Democrats voting against it.

Thursday's 75-59 vote to legalize same-sex marriage sets up a Monday vote in the Senate, where supporters say they have sufficient backing.

No Republicans had declared their support heading into the House vote. But yes votes came from David FitzSimmons of Albertville, Pat Garofalo of Farmington, Andrea Kieffer of Woodbury and Jenifer Loon of Eden Prairie.

Loon says she decided during the debate. Garofalo and FitzSimmons say an amendment to fortify religious protections was key. Kieffer was unavailable for comment.

The two Democrats against the marriage bill were Patti Fritz of Faribault and Mary Sawatzky of Willmar. Both come from districts that heavily supported a gay marriage ban.

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