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MINNEAPOLIS -- Gov. Mark Dayton will walk in the annual Twin Cities Pride parade in Minneapolis.

The Sunday morning parade is the main event of the city's 40th annual gay pride celebration. Dayton marched last year as governor, and has regularly participated in pride events going back to 1981.

Dayton has emerged as a leading critic of the amendment on the November ballot to ban gay marriage in the state constitution. He calls it an unnecessary attack on gay people and their families, and says it reflects poorly on Minnesota values.

Opponents of the November ballot measure are using the weekend's gay pride festivities to build support for their "vote no" campaign. Gay marriage is already illegal under Minnesota law, which gay activists say makes the amendment needlessly punitive.