The politics of marriage in Minnesota has changed dramatically in the wake of the midterm elections.
Gay rights activists had predicted 2012 would be the year they could make a serious push for gay marriage in the North Star State. But now, the Republican takeover of the state legislature has them on the defensive.
The Minnesota Family Council says it will push for a statewide vote in 2012 to ban gay marriage. Previous attempts in 2004, 2005 and 2006 were blocked by the state's old Democratic-controlled Senate.
Sen. Warren Limmer, a Republican from Maple Grove, said there's "a lot of bottled-up desire" in his party to finally put same-sex marriage before state voters.
"The statement I'll make is that there's a keen interest by a majority of the members of both chambers to define marriage, and to allow the public to do so," Limmer told the Star Tribune.
Meanwhile, gay marriage opponents have an ally in St. Paul-Minneapolis Archbishop John Nienstedt, who in September recorded a video message and mailed it to hundreds of thousands of Minnesota Roman Catholics in which he endorsed the constitutional amendment.