British lawmakers approve bill to legalize same-sex marriage

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British lawmakers voted in favor of a bill to legalize same-sex marriage Tuesday.

The House of Commons votes totaled to 400 votes in favor of the bill and 175 votes against the bill. British Prime Minister David Cameron advocated for the bill, however more than half the lawmakers in his party voted against or abstained it, The New York Times said.

Although the bill was passed by the House of Commons the House of Lords need to approve it before it becomes law. In addition, the bill only applies to England and Wales.

If the bill is approved by the House of Lords it will allow same-sex couples to get married in civil and religious ceremonies, as long as the religious institution agrees. It will also allow couples who are currently in civil partnerships to convert to marriage. The bill is expected to take effect in 2015, the Washington Post said.

Religious institutions that do not agree with same-sex marriages can opt out and they will be protected from legal claims. Although some religious institutions may agree to same-sex marriages, the Church of England continues to prohibit same-sex weddings, reports the Washington Post.

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This page contains a single entry by leret004 published on February 5, 2013 9:50 PM.

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