A majority of Minnesotans oppose lawmakers legalizing gay marriage, a new poll has found.

According to the Star Tribune Minnesota Poll released Tuesday, 53 percent of respondents said the state's current law limiting marriage to heterosexual unions should remain. Thirty-eight percent endorsed a legislative effort to extend marriage to gay and lesbian couples, while 9 percent refused to answer.

Opposition is higher outside the Minneapolis-Saint Paul metropolitan area (referred to locally as Outstate), where 73 percent of respondents remain opposed.

“Gay marriage is not right, and that's just all there is to it,” Ed Carlson, 66, of Brainerd, told the Star-Tribune. “I feel very strongly about it.”

A majority (57%) of residents in Hennepin and Ramsey counties, which includes the Twin Cities area, want marriage equality.

“If it can be done quickly without a lot of bells and whistles, then they should absolutely do it,” Jackie Colwell, 46, told the paper. “It's time for same-sex marriage to be legalized. Minnesota is ready for it. I just don't want it to become this circus atmosphere at the Capitol, though.”

Backers introduced a marriage bill at a press conference held last week. The move comes five months after Democrats regained control of the Legislature and voters rejected a proposed constitutional amendment which sought to define marriage as a heterosexual union.

(Related: Minnesota gay marriage bill introduced.)