World

Australia Passes Bill Legalizing Same-Sex Marriage

The Australian parliament voted to legalize gay marriage on Thursday, marking a historic day for homosexual couples in the nation.

“What a day for love, for equality, for respect,” said Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, according to BBC. “Australia has done it.”

The vote comes after a national poll showed 61.6 percent of Australians favored changing the current marriage laws. Lawmakers introduced the bill to amend the country’s Marriage Act in November. (RELATED: Australian Postal Referendum Approves Gay Marriage).

Parliament members who voted against the bill aren’t happy. “It is a special relationship between man and a woman for the purposes, if you are so lucky, for bringing children into the world,” Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce said on Thursday, BBC reports.

The bill will now head to the desk of Australia’s Governor-General Peter Cosgrove, who is expected to sign the legislation.

This move in the legislature comes after Austria’s Constitutional Court ruled on Tuesday that same-sex couples can legally wed, becoming the sixteenth European country to legalize gay marriage, according to TheNYT. Germany also voted to legalize gay marriage in June. (RELATED: Austria Legalizes Gay Marriage).

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