The Colombia Senate on Wednesday postponed taking a vote on a proposed gay marriage bill.

After several hours of debate, leaders voted 35-30 to put off the vote until Tuesday.

Senate President Roy Barreras had earlier postponed the April 10 start of the debate after an activist was assaulted during a congressional forum on the issue organized by Senators Edgar Espindola and Claudia Wilches, both of whom are opposed to marriage equality.

(Related: Colombia Senate shuts down debate on gay marriage after altercation.)

Senator Armando Benedetti, the measure's champion in the chamber, told colleagues that he nearly decided to abandon the effort until he heard horrible stories of discrimination.

Luis Carlos Henao of the National Family Forum compared sexual orientation to food preferences, saying that neither can be upgraded to human rights.

Supporters rallied in the Plaza de Bolivar outside Congress. They wrapped a sculpture of their nation's hero, Simon Bolivar, with a giant rainbow flag and staged a kiss-in.

Prospects for passage dimmed with the announcement by the conservative political party La U that they have the votes needed to kill the measure. Benedetti disagreed with that assessment, telling Colombia Reports that the Senate was “divided” over the issue.

The nation's Constitutional Court in 2011 ordered Congress to approve a law recognizing gay couples before June 20, 2013. If a law is not approved by that date, then “gay couples can go to a notary and with the same solemnity of a heterosexual marriage enter a union similar to one between a heterosexual couple.”