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Same-Sex Couples Apply for One Third of Minnesota's Marriage Licenses

By Daniel Reynolds

Nearly one in three marriage licenses issued in Minnesota in August were obtained by same-sex couples, according to a survey conducted by the Associated Press.

The survey found that at least 1,640 gay and lesbian couples have applied to be wed since Minnesota began issuing certificates August 1.

Since counties are not obligated to report this information, the news agency conducted its own study and received figures from 83 of Minnesota’s 87 counties.

In its research, the AP also found that most licenses were obtained in urban areas, with the highest concentration occurring in Hennepin and Ramsey counties, which include the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. In 29 counties, no same-sex couples applies for licenses.

Officials estimate that 5,000 gay and lesbian couples will marry within the first year after marriage equality’s enactment in Minnesota.

"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," Scott Dibble, a state senator and a sponsor of the marriage equality bill, told the AP. "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."

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