The Australian Senate on Thursday
rejected a bill which would have legalized gay marriage in the
The Senate voted 41 to 26 against the
measure. Yesterday, the House of Representatives defeated the
measure with a 98 to 42 vote.
Liberal Senator Sue Boyce broke ranks
with her party during debate on the bill.
“Gay people are just people,” she
“There are good gays and bad gays;
rich gays and poor gays; gays who want to get married and gays who
don't; gay who like footy and gays who don't; gays who want children
and those who don't.”
“I support the right of all religions
to decide, as they can and do right now, the criteria for solemnizing
marriages in their churches and temples,” she added.
Liberal Senator Cory Bernardi stirred
controversy with the suggestion that gay nuptials could lead to calls
for the legalization of bestiality. He was quickly released from his
post as a shadow parliamentary secretary.
Gay marriage advocates said they would
turn their attention to the states. At least two Australian states –
Tasmania and South Australia – in recent months have said they will
consider the issue.
“We will have loving and committed
same-sex couples married on Australian soil this year,” Alex
Greenwich of Australian Marriage Equality told reporters after the