After a full day of debate, same-sex marriage has been approved in England and Wales by a big majority in a key vote in Parliament.
The Commons voted in favour of the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill, by 400 to 175, a majority of 225. But this is just the first of several votes needed for the bill to pass. Nevertheless, supporters outside were jubilant.
“There’s still a long way to go. Changing people’s values and culture takes a long time. Sometimes you have to change the laws first if you can, and that’s what we are doing now. And I think, you know, in a few years time people will look back to today and think what was all the fuzz about – that was quite extraordinary.” said MP Caroline Lucas, speaking in Parliament Square after the vote.
The new law proposes legalising same-sex marriage in 2014. It would also allow civil partners to convert their arrangement into a marriage.
“Those who are oppose same sex marriage are basically saying that they support discrimination, and that gay couples are unworthy. That’s profoundly insulting. In a democratic society everyone should be equal before the law.” said high-profile gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell.
Prime Minister David Cameron’s authority took another hit, however. The Conservatives split in two in the free vote on the measure he himself had introduced.
- 1Women ‘tortured and murdered’ in German ‘House of Horrors’
- 2Political turmoil on the horizon in Turkey?
- 3Incredible scenes in the Turkish parliament
- 4Migrants in Idomeni react angrily to idea of visa-free Schengen travel for Turkey
- 5Donald Trump is set to be the Republican US presidential candidate
Wires > News
- 08:23 CET Bangladesh Islamist party leader to hang for war crimes
- 08:20 CET City where Soviet workers rose up stays calm in Russian crisis
- 08:00 CET Syria’s Aleppo relatively calm as truce takes effect – residents
- 05:14 CET Panama confirms four microcephaly cases tied to Zika
- 05:00 CET Mexico justice reform needs 11 years to fully take hold – study
- 04:30 CET Australian Islamic State recruiter killed in U.S. strike in Iraq
- 03:15 CET Stubborn Shanghai residents hold a line drawn in rubble
- 01:26 CET Cuba scrambles to keep pace with U.S.-fueled tourism boom