German Chancellor Angela Merkel on
Friday voted against a bill that extends marriage to gay and lesbian
“For me, marriage in German law is
marriage between a man and a woman and that is why I did not vote in
favor of this bill today,” Merkel said after casting her “no”
According to Deutsche Welle, the
bill, which makes Germany the 14th European country to
approve same-sex marriage, passed with a 393 to 226 vote, with four
The opportunity to move on the issue
appeared earlier this week when Merkel signaled that she would
support a free vote on the issue among her party members. Supporters
in the Bundestag quickly drafted a bill and put it up for a vote on
the last day of the session.
Merkel was under increasing pressure to
act on the issue from potential coalition partners that may emerge
from September's upcoming election.
Since 2001, Germany has recognized gay
and lesbian couples with civil partnerships.