Former Florida Governor Charlie Crist on Thursday applauded a judge's ruling striking down the state's ban on gay marriage.

Monroe County Circuit Judge Luis Garcia declared the marriage ban unconstitutional and ordered Monroe County Clerk Amy Heavilin to begin issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples on Tuesday, July 22.

(Related: Florida judge strikes down state's gay marriage ban.)

“This is a great step toward equality in Florida,” Crist tweeted to his more than 19,600 followers. “#LoveisLove.”

Crist, who is currently campaigning for his old job as a Democrat, filed an amicus brief in support of a federal challenge to Florida's marriage ban.

(Related: Charlie Crist files brief in support of marriage equality.)

Crist, who previously supported the ban, has cited the GOP's opposition to marriage equality as chief among his reasons for the leaving the Republican Party.