ST. PAUL, Minn. — Same-sex couples received nearly 1 in 3 marriage licenses issued in Minnesota since they were allowed to wed, The Associated Press found in a statewide survey of the first month's impact of the new gay marriage law.
Since Minnesota became the 12th U.S. state to legalize gay marriage, at least 1,640 same-sex couples applied to be married. Counties aren't required to report such data to the state, so the AP built a database through calls to all 87 counties.
Millions of dollars were spent trying to block gay marriage in Minnesota, while many millions more were spent trying to achieve it. The rush by same-sex couples to take advantage of the new law likely reflects a pent-up demand by couples together for many years.
"This is the product of people who were living in the legal wilderness for so long, suddenly no longer being told their relationships are substandard," said Sen. Scott Dibble, DFL-Minneapolis and a sponsor of the bill passed by the Legislature and signed by Gov.Mark Dayton in May. "There's an excitement out there right now. I've been going to so many weddings lately, it's like I'm two years out of college again."