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Rep. Tim Kelly of Red Wing explains his bill to allow civil unions on Wednesday, April 3, 2013. With him is Rep. Pat Garofalo of Farmington. -- Forum News Service photo by Don Davis

Rep. Kelly inserts civil union plan into gay marriage debate

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ST. PAUL -- Civil unions would give gay couples the same rights as married couples, says the sponsor of a Minnesota House proposal that is a step short of full marriage.

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"Government's role is to protect the individual," Rep. Tim Kelly, R-Red Wing, said Wednesday, adding that a bill authorizing civil unions he is introducing today would do just that.

Gay marriage advocates immediately said the bill would create legal inequalities between gay and straight couples.

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Don Davis
Don Davis has been the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau chief since 2001, covering state government and politics for two dozen newspapers in the state. Don also blogs at Capital Chatter on Areavoices.
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