By Sunnivie Brydum
Originally published on Advocate.com May 13 2013 1:22 PM ET
At noon Central time, the Minnesota state Senate began a bill that would establish marriage equality in the Midwestern state. Democrats control the Senate by an 11-seat margin, meaning advocates are optimistic that the legislation will pass that chamber and head to the governor's desk.
Gov. Mark Dayton, also a Democrat, has promised to sign the bill if it reaches his desk. In November, Minnesota voters rejected a proposed constitutional amendment that would have banned marriage for same-sex couples.
The Minnesota House of Representatives approved the bill Wednesday afternoon by a vote of 75-59, including "aye" votes from four Republicans.
The legislation, House File 1054, provides for marriage between any two adults but would not require religious institutions or individuals to perform or recognize same-sex marriages.
Watch the debate live, via the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, below.