Sunday, February 03, 2013

French National Assembly Approves Marriage Bill

On Saturday, the French National Assembly overwhelming voted 249-97 to approve the first article of a bill that would  enact marriage equality in the European nation. The vote is part of the fulfillment of a campaign promise French President Francois Hollande made prior to his May 2012 election and comes after huge rallies were held over the last few months both in favor and opposition to the initiative to end marriage discrimination against same-sex couples in France.

The BBC reports that the lopsided vote tally on the first (but most important) article of the marriage equality legislation bodes well for the entire measure becoming law:
Opinion polls suggest that around 55-60% of French people support gay marriage, though only about 50% approve of gay adoption.
Correspondents say the ease with which the article passed suggests the bill as a whole will pass.
Debates are expected to go on for more than a week, as MPs discuss hundreds of amendments, most of them filed by the centre-right opposition.
On the way they are expected to approve the other key measure in the bill, which would allow gay couples to adopt children.
The bill marks one of France's biggest social reforms since the abolition of the death penalty in 1981.
"We are happy and proud to have taken this first step," Justice Minister Christiane Taubira said.
"We are going to establish the freedom for everyone to choose his or her partner for a future together."
Liberté, égalité, fraternité!

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