Senate candidates Tammy Baldwin and Tommy Thompson recently discussed their differing views on gay marriage.

Thompson and Baldwin are competing to replace retiring Wisconsin Senator Herb Kohl.

Thompson, the former governor of Wisconsin, and Congresswoman Baldwin spent part of their first debate Friday night sparring over marriage equality.

“71 out of 72 counties voted for a constitutional amendment in Wisconsin and I support those 71 counties,” Thompson, a Republican, stated. “It's an issue left up to the states and that's where it should be.”

Baldwin, who if elected would become the nation's first openly gay senator, said she supported marriage rights for gay and lesbian couples.

“I believe in principles of equality and I certainly support marriage equality,” she answered. “I recognize what the voters of Wisconsin decided back in 2006. But we know that every year people are thinking about this issue and changing their minds.”

She added that she was very moved by President Barack Obama's “journey to support marriage equality.” (The video is embedded on this page. Visit our video library for more videos.)