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Watch: Republican gives a moving speech in favor of gay marriage

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A lot of news that comes out of politics and in particular the debate over gay marriage can be soul crushing. But sometimes it can take you by surprise and make you feel better about humanity! Thanks to Republican Rep. John Kriesel, this is one of those times. Shortly before a vote this weekend putting the option to constitutionally define marriage as being solely between a man and a woman on Minnesota's 2012 general election ballot, Kriesel gave an emotional speech explaining his change of heart on the issue and exhorting his colleagues in the state's House of Representatives to do the same. Here's an excerpt:

"It woke me up, it changed me," said Kriesel, citing injuries incurred during service in Iraq.  "As bad as that day sucked, I've learned a lot from it. It's made me think about this issue. I 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 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 be together, but you can't marry them. You can't marry them.' And that's wrong. I disagree with it. […] It's easy to go with the flow, go with the current, just kind of, you know, do what's wrong. But it is oftentimes hard to stand up against a group of people you may be close with, or stand up for something that may not be popular, but it's the right thing to do. And I'm proud of the stance I took. Proud to stand with … many of my colleagues on the other side of the aisle, because it's the right thing to do. This amendment doesn't represent what I went [to Iraq] to fight for."

Very nicely said. Check out the full clip above, and feel your faith in politicians be at least a little bit restored by this commendable move.