A bill which seeks to make Britain the
15th nation to legalize gay marriage was approved by the
House of Lords on its second reading Tuesday, leaving little doubt
the bill will become law.
After roughly 3 hours of debate,
members approved the measure with a voice vote. The House of Commons
approved the measure last month. The bill now heads to the committee
An amendment aimed at derailing the
project was widely defeated by a 390-148 margin. The “wrecking
amendment,” as it has been dubbed by the media, sought to allow
straight couples to enter civil partnerships. Opponents were
disappointed by the meager support the amendment received.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin
Welby, told colleagues that he could not support the bill because it
would diminish and devalue marriage.
“The concept of marriage as a
normative place for procreation is lost. The idea [of] marriage as
covenant is diminished. The family in its normal sense, predating
the state, and as our base community of society, as we have already
heard, is weakened,” he said. (The video is embedded on this page.
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Writing in the Financial
Times, Lord Browne, the former BP chief executive who
publicly came out gay in 2007, argued that marriage equality was good
“People are happier and more
productive and make more money for their company when they feel they
are included and can be themselves,” he wrote. “Giving gay
couples the freedom to marry sends an important signal of