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Mark Dayton ’69: WWJFKD?

Lobbying his fellow Minnesota Democrats in favor of same-sex marriage, Governor Mark Dayton ’69 pulled out a surprising tactic: WWJFKD.

“He reminded [state] House members of John F. Kennedy’s 1955 book Profiles in Courage, a collection of sketches about U.S. senators who took difficult stands,” the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported about closed-door meetings with legislators last week. At a mid-April rally in the freezing rain, Dayton declared: “People don't want to be civil-unioned, they want to be married. We're going to get this thing through.”

Dayton’s lobbying paid off on May 9, when the Minnesota House passed the Freedom to Marry Act, 75 to 59. The state Senate is expected to vote on Monday.

If the bill passes, it will mark the second victory in less than a week for Freedom to Marry, the national organization founded and led by Evan Wolfson ’78. Delaware governor Jack Markell signed his state’s gay-marriage law on May 7, a half-hour after the Senate approved it.

Filed under same-sex marriage, Mark Dayton, Evan Wolfson
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