IT'S DONE: Same-sex marriage is officially legal in Australia!

Cheryl Sanders
December 7, 2017

Australia's parliament passed a bill legalising same-sex marriage Thursday after the nation overwhelmingly voted in favour of changing the law, ending decades of political wrangling.

Debate on proposed amendments dragged on in the House of Representatives throughout the day, but in the end it was passed without any changes.

"What a day for love, for equality, for respect".

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull looked particularly pleased, though he was criticised on Twitter, and accused of trying to take credit for this. "The Parliament has got on with it and we have voted today for a equality, for love, it is time for more marriages, more commitment, more love, more respect, and we respect every Australian who was voted, those who voted yes, and those who voted no, this belongs to us all, this is Australia!"


The votes in favour of the bill were not even counted as a majority was not questioned.

The government has appointed a panel to examine how to safeguard religious freedoms once gay marriage was a reality in Australia.

Media captionWill you marry me?

It will become law after being approved without amendments. Government minister Peter Dutton, a leader among hard-right lawmakers in the conservative government, said his fellow leading gay-marriage opponents in Parliament agree they should not stop the bill from becoming law while arguing over protecting views of gay-marriage opponents.


The move follows a two-month national postal survey that showed 61% of more than 12 million respondents were in favor of marriage equality.

Marriage equality campaigners have fought for years for Thursday's vote.

Fighting back tears, Liberal MP Sarah Henderson told the story Wednesday night of a close gay friend of hers who died months ago and who, in one of their last conversations, asked her to continue to push for same-sex marriage.

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.


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