Parliament breaks into song as same-sex marriage bill passes

Frederick Owens
December 8, 2017

"What a day for love, for equality, for respect!" The Senate had already passed its own version of the bill the week prior.

While the votes were not immediately tallied, in the House of Representatives, it was clear that 130 to 140 members of parliament voted "yes", according to the Herald.

Tracy Clark and her partner Justyna Greinart embrace as they gather with a crowd of people to watch a large television screen at Federation Square as it is announced that same-sex marriage will be legal in Australia with Parliament agreeing to change the Marriage Act and end the ban on gay and lesbian couples marrying on December 7, 2017 in Melbourne, Australia.

Australian law says couples must wait 30 days to get married once they apply to do so.

"We've voted today for equality, for love, it's time for more marriages, more commitment, more love, more respect", he continued.

Nearly 80 per cent of eligible voters took part in the poll, and almost 62pc of the 12.7 million people who participated chose "yes" on their ballots.

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Lawmaker spent 55 hours across both houses in speeches and debate.

In moving scenes, the entire parliament burst into song after the bill passed, belting out the lyrics to the "I Am Australian" song: "We are one, but we are many; And from all the lands on earth we come; We'll share a dream and sing with one voice; "I am, you are, we are Australian".

Here are some facts about same-sex marriage around the world: * Same-sex marriage is legal in 26 nations: Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Britain, Canada, Colombia, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greenland, Iceland, Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Uruguay, United States.

The House had been widely expected to approve the historic bill after the Senate approved the same legislation last week.

Politicians, who had cast aside a conservative push to allow religious objectors to refuse service to same-sex couples, waved rainbow flags and embraced on the floor of the chamber, where earlier in the debate a politician had proposed to his same-sex partner. Simply and fairly, #MarriageEquality is now law! The first same-sex marriages in the country will take place on January 9.

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