Minnesota State Rep. John Kriesel is
among the Republicans joining the fight against a proposed gay
marriage ban in the state.
On Thrusday, Kriesel announced that his
group Republicans Against the Minnesota Marriage Amendment had joined
Minnesotans United for All Families, the leading coalition opposed to
banning gay marriage in the state's constitution.
“I'm Republican because I believe in
individual liberty and freedom,” Kriesel said. “I believe this
is an attack on that.”
During the debate in the House on
whether to send the amendment to voters, Kriesel told colleagues that
a near death experience while serving in Iraq changed his mind on the
“It woke me up. It changed me,”
Kriesel said. “Because of that, it's made me think about this
issue. And say, 'You know what, what would I do without my wife?'
She makes me happy. Life is hard. We're in a really tough time in
our history. Happiness is so, so hard to find for people. So they
find it, they find someone that makes them happy, and we want to take
that person away. We want to say, 'Oh no, you can be together, you
can love that person, but you can't marry them.' You can't marry
them. That's wrong.”
Also joining the coalition are gay GOP
group Log Cabin Republicans, which includes a number of prominent
Republicans, Richard Painter, who was associate counsel for President
W. Bush and Republican consultant Wheelock Whitney.