Thursday, 14 December, 2017

Australian Parliament OKs same-sex marriage

Final vote on same sex marriage bill looms Where we are in the SSM debate
Sammy Stanley | 07 December, 2017, 09:38

Australia's Parliament would legalize gay marriage this week despite some lawmakers' concerns about whether Australian cake makers should have to cater for same-sex weddings, a leading opponent of marriage equality said on Wednesday.

"What a day for love, for equality, for respect", said Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

Among them was Christine Forster, the gay sister of Tony Abbott, the former Australian Prime Minister who has always been seen as the face of the "no" campaign.

The bill has cleared both houses after passing the Senate last week and now only requires approval from the Governor General, a formality that will likely happen on Friday.

"Australians have spoken in their millions and they have voted overwhelmingly yes for marriage equality", he had said after the result was announced. And I said to LGBTIQ Australians in particular, you have given us a gift. The major parties want the legislation passed this week after a majority of Australian's endorsed change in a postal ballot last month.

Pentagon signals open-ended troop commitment in Syria
He said the USA -led coalition would continue to apply "continuous pressure on the terrorist networks wherever they operate". The Pentagon first announced plans to revise the number on August 31, when they unveiled a higher troop count in Afghanistan.

Liberal backbencher Kevin Andrews, who is against same-sex marriage, believes the bill contains very little protection for religion and belief. Though the bill was expected to pass into law without significant opposition, the lengthy legislative process was excruciatingly slow for the hundreds of advocates watching from the public gallery.

The Senate voted decisively in favour of the legislation last week.

All proposed amendments to the bill were knocked back, meaning that marriage equality will become law without special provisions for bakers, florists and civil celebrants to refuse service to same sex marriages.

Australians have always been in favor of same-sex marriage, with polling from as long as 10 years ago showing a majority support for legalizing marriage equality. Liberal Party member Sarah Henderson teared up as she spoke about her friend gay friend John Parker, who died months earlier and was waiting for the Marriage Act to change.

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