Minn. College Republicans chairman champions gay marriage - KMSP-TV

Minn. College Republicans chairman champions gay marriage

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) -

Two-term chairman of the Minnesota College Republicans Ryan Lyk released a statement in support of gay marriage on Wednesday.

Marriage as been a hotly-contested topic in Minnesota over the last few years, and a historic vote last year shot down an amendment that would have constitutionally excluded same-sex couples from marriage. Last week, a bill was introduced that would grant that right -- and it's one Lyk supports.

"Marriage is a meaningful, important institution in our society -- nothing compares to that lifelong commitment that two people make to each other," he said. "As a young Republican and a supporter of individual freedom and limited government, I urge Republicans to join me in supporting legislation that will extend the freedom to marry to same-sex couples in Minnesota."

The Star Tribune released a poll of Wednesday that showed 53 percent of the state supports the current law banning same-sex marriage, while 38 percent stand with Lyk. Nine percent of the 800 respondents were undecided.

Lyk, a former intern to Michele Bachmann wants to make it clear that Republicans and Democrats alike support gay marriage. College Republicans are still split on the issue, but support is growing.

"As the Chairman of the Minnesota College Republicans, I am proud of the work our organization does every day to elect Republicans and promote limited government and fiscal responsibility," Lyk said. "While I would never claim to speak for everyone in my organization, I know I speak for many young Republicans when I say that it is time for the Republican Party to move past this issue. I, like many of my colleagues, vote on economic and fiscal issues. The fact that we are still debating whether or not government can dictate marriage detracts from those issues and it is time we move on."

Minnesota's Legislature may vote on the legalization bill later this spring.

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