Former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson on Thursday announced he backs gay marriage.

Johnson, whose common sense and good judgment were recently lauded in a GQ story titled Is Gary Johnson the Sanest Man Running for President?, previously only backed civil unions for gay and lesbian couples.

The GOP candidate for president made his announcement during an online town hall with Jimmy LaSalvia, co-founder and executive director of gay GOP group GOProud.

“As a believer in individual freedom and keeping government out of personal lives, I simply cannot find a legitimate justification for federal laws, such as the Defense of Marriage Act, which 'define' marriage. That definition should be left to religions and individuals – not government. Government's role when it comes to marriage is one of granting benefits and rights to couples who choose to enter into a marriage 'contract.' As I have examined this issue, consulted with folks on all sides, and viewed it through the lens of individual freedom and equal rights, it has become clear to me that denying those rights and benefits to gay couples is discrimination, plain and simple,” Johnson said.

(Related: Gary Johnson offended by anti-gay marriage pledge.)