Gay NV lawmaker to NBA's Collins: 'Congratulations!' - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Gay NV lawmaker to NBA's Collins: 'Congratulations!'

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State Sen. Kelvin Atkinson came out to colleagues on April 22, 2013 as part of a debate over same-sex marriage. State Sen. Kelvin Atkinson came out to colleagues on April 22, 2013 as part of a debate over same-sex marriage.
CARSON CITY, NV (FOX5) -

NBA player Jason Collins used the words, "I'm black and I'm gay," to come out in a Sports Illustrated article as revealed on Monday.

Those same words echoed the emotional coming out of Nevada State Sen. Kelvin Atkinson, who did so in session before his colleagues just a week before.

On Monday, Atkinson, D-Las Vegas, applauded Collins for coming out while still an active player in one of the four major North American sports leagues.

"Now following @jasoncollins34! Much respect and congratulations!" Atkinson said in a tweet mentioning Collins.

Atkinson used the words "I'm black. I'm gay," as part of a debate in the Nevada Senate over a same-sex marriage resolution.

"If this hurts your marriage, then your marriage was in trouble in the first place," Atkinson followed in the same breath.

His revelation prefaced the passing of Senate Joint Resolution 13, which could pave the way for a repeal of a ban on same-sex marriage in the state.

Atkinson is one of six members in the Nevada Legislature who belong to the LGBT community.

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