Minnesota Rep. Tim Faust, a Democrat, on Thursday became emotional as the Minnesota House debated a proposed gay marriage bill.

Last fall, a majority of voters in Faust's district voted in favor of an unsuccessful statewide ballot initiative which sought to define marriage as a heterosexual union in the Minnesota Constitution.

On the House floor, Faust, also a Lutheran minster, acknowledged the votes of his constituents, then, for the first time publicly, announced his support for gay nuptials, explaining that his recent marriage helped change his mind.

“Well, I have to start by admitting not too long ago I probably would have voted no on this bill,” Faust said.

“Last summer, I got married. And before that, I had dated a woman for four years. And she was a wonderful woman. And I realized after four years, that I could have married her and I would have been happily married to her for the rest of my life. But I also realized, I could be happy without her. And I decided after four years that I wasn't going to marry somebody I could live with. If I married again, it was going to be to somebody I could not live without. And so, we broke up. And in a few months, I met my wife. And it didn't take me very long to realize this was somebody I could not live without. And how lucky I am. How lucky we are.”

“And yet in this state there are people that feel that way about each other, that cannot live without that other person, that feel the same way they do about each other that I feel about my wife and yet because of religious beliefs of other people, they do not have the right that I have taken for granted since the day I realized what the opposite sex was.” (The video is embedded on this page. Visit our video library for more videos.)

(Related: Historic day for Minnesota as Senate votes on gay marriage bill.)