A former state Representative in Michigan has quit the Republican party, in protest at its opposition to gay rights.

Lorence Wenke, who was just one of two Michigan Republicans to vote against the state’s constitutional same-sex marriage ban in 2004, told MLive he refused to be in a party that sanctions discrimination.

He said: “I was the only legislator to call it what it is — discrimination against our gay brothers and sisters.

“At that time, three local Republican legislators with gay brothers never said a word in support of gay rights.

“I challenge them with this question: If you will not stand up for your own family members, who will you stand up for?

“These same people often ignore the clear teachings of Jesus and Paul stating that remarriage after divorce is committing adultery.”

He also called out the state’s governor, Rick Snyder, for his attitude to gay rights.

He said: “I can only assume it is because they fear the political consequences.”

“I support the constitutional right of our gay family members to enjoy the same rights as our heterosexual family members.”

Wenke has since joined the Libertarian party, and will now run for Senate against his former Republican colleagues.

Michigan’s Attorney General is currently appealing a ruling that overturned the state’s ban on same-sex marriage.

Last week, the Nevada GOP voted to remove opposition to same-sex marriage from the State Platform.