Oregon State Rep. Julie Parrish over the weekend became the highest-ranking House Republican to endorse a bid to legalize gay marriage in Oregon.

Oregon voters in November will be the first in the nation to consider whether to scrap a constitutional amendment limiting marriage to heterosexual couples. Oregon voters approved the state's ban in 2004.

Openly gay NBA veteran Jason Collins later this month will help kick off Freedom Oregon, a group which backs the ban's repeal and includes several prominent Republicans.

(Related: Jason Collins to help inaugurate GOP-inclusive Oregon gay marriage group.)

On Saturday, Parrish, the second-highest ranking member of the Oregon House GOP caucus, reacted to the news in a Facebook post, arguing that allowing gay couples to marry is a conservative value.

“People have asked me my thoughts on the marriage equality ballot initiative that will be voted on this November, and whether I'm supporting it, and indeed, I am,” Parrish said. “I have to shake my head when I read posts that say if you're a Republican who supports this measure you're somehow rolling over on your Republican principles just to agree with Democrats and liberals. I can trace my Oregon Republican … roots back to the 1800's, as well as my family's contributions and extensive service to the state as Republican business owners, farmers, soldiers, and legislators. My kids are the eighth generation to live in Oregon, and I'm teaching them the values I believe Oregon Republicans have held since the first time someone in my family was elected in Oregon in 1885. Freedom, equality, fairness, prosperity, opportunity, and self-determination. The initiative in 2014 touches on all those values. For my religiously conservative friends, enhancing the power of the US Constitution's First Amendment freedom of religion by memorializing and protecting the rights of your church in our state constitution is a good thing. Under the proposed initiative, if your church chooses not to marry a gay couple, it doesn't have to. If as Republicans we truly embrace the values of freedom, equality, and fairness, then I believe we must recognize that those rights should be applied equally to all. If we believe in limited government, then we should exercise restraint in picking and choosing what is limited. I appreciate that being an Oregon Republican means that we can proudly promote our personal, core values and if yours are different than mine, that's ok. At the end of the day … we're all Oregonians first and foremost.”

Alternative weekly Willamette Week noted that Republicans supporting the initiative are at odds with the Republican Party's official stance.

“The Oregon Republican Party believes that the traditional family is ordained by God our Creator and is the foundation of our society. A traditional family is formed through the marriage of one man and one woman,” the Oregon GOP platform adopted last August reads.