Germany approves Same Sex Marriage

Interesting development in Germany today as the Bundestag approved by 393-226.

German Chancellor, Angela Merkel was opposed to the bill herself but still allowed a free vote for her Christian Democratic Union representatives in the Bundestag.

Explaining her opposition to the bill she said;

 “For me, marriage in German law is marriage between a man and a woman and that is why I did not vote in favour of this bill today,”

“I hope that the vote today not only promotes respect between different opinions but also brings more social cohesion and peace.”

The report continues;

The Chancellor said she supported the bill’s introduction of full adoption rights for same-sex couples – a move she had previously opposed – and was fighting anti-LGBT discrimination.

Ms Merkel had freed her conservative Christian Democrats (CDU/CSU) from the party whip on the issue, calling for a “vote of conscience”.

The centre-left Social Democratic Party (SPD), which is governing in a coalition with the CDU/CSU, read the statement as permission to launch the snap vote.

It was called by under an amendment entitled “marriage for all”, which was already guaranteed a majority in the Bundestag with the combined support of the SPD, the Left party and Greens.

Johannes Kahrs, an SPD politician known for his LGBT campaigning, launched a blistering attack on Ms Merkel over “embarrassing” delays to the legislation.

He finished his impassioned speech with: “Frau Merkel, thanks for nothing.”

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  • Granni Trixie

    Isn’t it wonderful to see a politican prepared to do what it takes in the interests of “peace and social cohesion”. Timely for Sf and the DUP to take note?

    The SPD politician shows a lack of responding generosity.

  • Oggins

    AM could teach our politicians a thing or two about peace and social cohesion. Fair play to the Germans.

  • Skibo

    Granni what you fail to mention that the main points holding the thing up have been agreed and have been included in previous agreements. What is happening now is the DUP are refusing to give any guarantees in completing the previous agreements.
    This would remind me of a contractor doing work for a client and the client holding back 30% of the payment. After completing two jobs and the client failing to honour the contract each time, why should the contractor take on another job without full payment of the previous contracts?
    I listened to William Crawley today and William the Atheist DUP voter commented that Angela Merkel held the same views as the DUP on same sex marriage and is not being hounded like the DUP are. What he failed to mention is that Angela allowed a free vote for her party.
    if the DUP could do the same and agree not to use the POC to withhold rights from minorities.

  • Skibo

    They were also very successful in reunification, perhaps we should take lessons from them.

  • Oggins

    Hahaha 😉

  • Granni Trixie

    If the vox pops from ST George’s Market on GMU this morning are anything to go by I’m not the only one who blames SF as well as the DUP for not getting to yes.

  • chrisjones2

    She voted and spoke strongly against gay marriage

  • chrisjones2

    Perhaps ….a soon as we all want to reunify

  • chrisjones2

    She voted against it

  • chrisjones2

    “the main points holding the thing up have been agreed and have been included in previous agreements”

    Not true. The DUP never promised ro signed up to irish Language ACt. Blair misled the Shinners but their stupidity in not pinning it down in their desperation to get power is their problem

    It is also a remarkably stupid issue to collapse the Assembly over now the lies over Arlene and RHi are more and more clear. The vast majority of RHI cash is going to farmers …and whose Department told them to fill their boots?

  • Oggins

    But she allowed a vote Chris. didn’t allow personal opinion or belief’s to hold the party or country

  • Granni Trixie

    But that’s what I admire about what she did – she was true to herself whilst accepting the will of the majority. All by allowing a free vote.

    Or put it another way – she lost a battle but won the war!

    What I originally wanted to highlight however was the value she gave to creating stability/cohesion in her country something absent in Ni.

  • Reader

    Granni Trixie: Or put it another way – she lost a battle but won the war!
    Whereas Tim Farron lost both. Though he would surely have allowed his own party a free vote from the outset.

  • Deplorable Ulsterman

    Civilisational decline before our very eyes.

    Thank heavens that in Northern Ireland we have sensible local politicians not afraid to stand up for what is right, and looking out for the best interests of healthy families and children. Let us be a bastion of common sense and defy the loony “liberal” (degenerate anarchist) bullies!

  • notimetoshine

    Countries like Germany and France are odd ones. Shockingly socially liberal even by British standards, they are wonderful places for Gay people to live free from the sort of prejudice they put up with in Northern Ireland or the US for example. Yet they have had a far harder time than Britain in institutionalising same sex marriage. You could be forgiven for thinking that Germany would have introduced it long before Britain. An odd one no doubt.

  • Oggins

    Please join us Chris. I promise to buy you a beer 😉

  • grumpy oul man

    More wild claims and insults, do you ever present a actual argument.

  • hollandia

    Its possible DU may be a parody act.

  • Ben De Hellenbacque
  • Gaygael

    Ack sweetie! Its becoming an obsession. Why some much comment and energy of queer equality?
    Something going on?

  • Zeno3

    Hold on, hold on. You’re telling us that in all the years NI was being demonised for not having SSM that GERMANY the largest country in the EU didn’t have it????

  • notimetoshine

    I was referring to the backlash in Paris and elsewhere (some violent protest) during the passing of same sex marriage and the furious reaction of much of the French press. Contrast that the much easier passage in the UK (or even Ireland) of same sex marriage. I just find it very puzzling how strong a reaction was generated.

    As for Germany well it is 2017 and it is relatively late to the party and with significant resistance. And this is Germany, a veritable beacon of socially liberal values in Europe. Just seems odd.

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    It sounds like you feel something’s being forced down your throat. Once you overcome your habitual gag reflex … ya never know!

  • chrisjones2

    I am utterly in favour of it!

  • chrisjones2

    fair enough

  • chrisjones2

    Since when was suppressing the rights of minorities a badge of civilisation?

  • chrisjones2

    He sounds a bit LADDISH

  • DOUG

    Correct.
    And now they do.

  • Granni Trixie

    That’s a bit too cryptic for me – can you expand re TF?

  • Reader

    Granni, I am sure that Tim Farron would surely have allowed his own party a free vote on matters of conscience. But his own party did not accept that as sufficient. Unlike Merkel, Farron had to fully live up to social liberalism.
    Do you think that Alliance should be more like the LibDems or like the CDU when it comes to votes on matters of conscience?

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    Ah yes, I’d forgotten about the most memorable of French street protests, allying devout catholics, devout muslims and neo nazi thugs.

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    He has to be. But let’s not blow his cover and look at who upticks him

  • Smithborough
  • Granni Trixie

    Although many in APNI would support the Lib Dems I do not myself (I favour Labour) hence I wouldn’t look to them as a model to follow for various reasons.

    Abortion is a conscuence vote in Alliance however -as it is likely to be Impossible to reach consensus on which to base policy. It has a policy to support SSM on equality grounds.

  • Zeno3

    My problem is I’ve never heard it mentioned anywhere that Germany didn’t have SSM. Why was that?

  • Smithborough

    In world terms the UK is a socially liberal outlier. Even in European terms it is one of the more liberal states. You don’t hear because the progressive narrative is fundamentally a con trick, pressurising you to conform by convincing you that you’re the only one out of step when in reality western liberaism is the outlier.

  • WindsorRocker

    People are trying to compare Merkel and the DUP to in effect say “Look you nasty DUPers, even she has let it through”

    The reality is as long as both of them had the power to block SSM they blocked it.

    The only difference being that Merkel is part of a conventional western democracy where if she wants to have power and influence she has to be able to build coalitions in order to maintain that power. ALL of her potential voluntary coalition partners made this an issue and said they wouldn’t serve in government with her unless it was implemented. So in order to avoid it as an election issue and impacting the chances of her CDU gaining or retaining power, she allowed the vote to happen but with her and whoever in her party that wanted to, voting against it.

    Up until now she has had that unilateral power to block SSM and she has used it.
    The DUP has also up until now had the power to block SSM unilaterally. IF the DUP were needing to form a voluntary coalition I’m sure they would also agree to some form of process that would allow them to express their opposition but ultimately let it disappear as an issue.

    The difference with Northern Ireland is of course, that the architects of our current constitution designed it in such a way that any minority could veto something they didn’t like. That veto in the form of the PoC has been used by the DUP to block SSM, been used by SF/SDLP/Greens to block Welfare Reform and there have been attempts to use it for issues such as criminal record criteria for appointed officials. None of these of course are remotely sectarian issues so clearly whoever designed the PoC missed that loophole. The reality is that whilst many of the other parties criticise the DUP for using the PoC to block SSM, they aren’t prepared to give up the right to veto things they don’t like that don’t fall under the “sectarian” bracket. In fact their attitude suggests they are happy for the PoC to be used on non “sectarian” issues but only the ones they want to veto or that they define as worthy of a veto.

    The very existence of this device posed and still poses an electoral issue for the DUP. If a device is there to achieve a policy objective then their electorate, prompted by competing political opponents might well ask “Why didn’t you try to use it?”. In our system, there is only downside in the DUP not using it…. No potential voluntary coalition partners ready with a slap on the back and a promise to enter into power together instead of leaving them out in the cold. No, just a hit with the base whilst others resist voluntary coalition as they would also have to detoxify themselves to the wider electorate and have no intention of doing so.

  • Smithborough

    I should also add that Germany does not yet have SSM as the new law could (and probably will) be challenged in the Constitutional Court as unconstitutional.

  • Zeno3

    That’s astonishing.

  • Smithborough

    Why?

  • Zeno3

    I thought Germany would have been very liberal and progressive and would have had SSM a long time ago.

  • _NMcC_

    One thing I find rather interesting is that Angela Merkel has a Ph.D in Physical Chemistry and has always been very open-minded about matters such as LGBT rights, immigration etc

    Most politicians in the UK have degrees in politics/law/humanities. I’ve always wondered if they would make more conscientious decisions or decisions in the best interests of everyone, if they had degrees in Science or Maths?

  • Zeno3

    Good point,

  • Georfe Jungle

    Same Sex Marriage will happen sooner rather than later, and rightly so (Thank you GayGael for the reasoning behind it)

    The sooner the DUP realise this the better, and allow it to be at least put to a referendum.

    We have the (once again) bizarre situation where on National Television Gerry Adams comes across as reasonable and the DUP as something from the dark ages.

    Personally the religious beliefs of individuals should not interfere with governance.

    The DUP need to “play the game”, they make it easy for SF by being so predictable.

    I would like to see them supporting this issue and then move on to the issue of sectarianism/racism within the GAA and the funding that surrounds it, i.e. no funding until they become a NEUTRAL organisation for ALL.

  • Georfe Jungle

    The only time Ireland was unified was under British rule.

    And with Brexit, this once again must be seriously considered.

    A UK of England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

    As I said it should be given serious consideration by all progressives on these Islands.

  • Backbencher

    The uptick is just in case you had any doubt on what my thoughts were.

    Ah, the intolerance of the self designated liberals.

  • Backbencher

    Getting weary of the use of the word equality when talking about SSM, it may be an issue of rights but it is not about equality. No one is being treated any differently to anyone else.

    When it comes to rights, it comes down to a question of where do you draw the line.

  • Gaygael

    Yes. I patently am. There are distinct differences between the rights and responsibilities granted by civil partnerships and marriages.

    I am only allowed to access civil partnerships which infer less rights and responsibilities. I am denied access to the other on the basis of my sexual orientation.

  • Gaygael

    Again. The most cursory of examinations in this week dorm bedstead would have provided you that information.

  • Granni Trixie

    From what I hear gay people say, they feel less equal than others because they do not have access to marriage. GEt over your weariness.

  • John Collins

    We had that from 1801 to 1922. From our point of view it was a failure. GB had the chance to rule Ireland efficiently and they blew it spectacularly. As a certain NI reverend gentleman used to say ‘Never, Never’

  • Backbencher

    ‘I am denied access to the other on the basis of my sexual orientation’ – no, you are not denied access to same sex marriage because of your sexual orientation, everyone is denied access (not just you) because it is outside the law. Therefore it is not one of equality but one of where do you draw the line or boundary.
    What you are saying is that you don’t want a partner from within the boundaries set for everyone therefore you want to change the boundaries. Wanting to change the boundaries is a reasonable position to have but don’t dress it up as equality

  • Deplorable Ulsterman

    I can say I have the “right” to cut your head off. Doesn’t make it a badge if civilisation either. We already have a sensible balanced arrangement of civil partnerships in Northern Ireland.

  • Deplorable Ulsterman

    Because “sweety”, people like you are fircing your degeneracy upon children and mainstream society rather than keeping your abnormality to yourself.

  • Ben De Hellenbacque

    So do you

  • Skibo

    That is just not true. Ireland had numerous Ard Ri before the English came under the invite of the Leinster King to oppose Rory O’Connor.
    In a similar way so the English Crown came into being.
    The issue of the Normans was, after conquering England and Wales, they came and conquered Ireland but always the island of Ireland was known as the Kingdom of Ireland.
    The only country giving any press to Ireland joining the UK outside the EU is England and some Northern Unionists who do not understand economics.

  • Gaygael

    We are not going back in the closet. Bad luck love.

  • Gaygael

    You fail to understand that Sexual orientation is a protected characteristic.
    The law must take account of that, hence the advocacy for the law change on the basis of equality.

    Now are you wanting to respond to the recent ‘DUP style legal threats’ to anyone calling the DUP homophobic?

  • Backbencher

    So is religion, given your logic are you advocating changing the law to allow Muslims to marry multiple wives. I expect not.
    In the world of the liberal some are more equal than others!

  • Gaygael

    You make some presumptions.
    If there is a significant campaign built for years arguing for recognition rights for polyamory that bring it on. There isn’t.

    The campaign for equal marriage in Northern Ireland has been clear from the start. This is about allowing same sex couples the right to access civil marriage.

    Another distraction.

  • Backbencher

    Surely if this is all about equality it doesn’t matter what the level of support is or how long the campaign has went on for? Surely the Muslim is equally entitled to have marriage defined as he would like it.

    The fallacy of your logic has been exposed here, you say it is about equal rights because of a protected characteristic, but when I represent a similar scenario for another protected characteristic you deny them because there is no public support (and rightly so).

  • Gaygael

    Not all ‘Muslims’ (and I’m not comfortable that you immediately jumped to our Muslim siblings, as polygamy is cultural rather than religious) That is one very minor interpretation of a particular element of faith. He can do according to his faith. We are fully in support of faith groups interpreting marriage as fits with their doctrine and articles of faith. Divorce as the repeated case in point. The moot point is whether that particular should be the only one recognised by the state.

    Should the state recognise polygamous marriages? I’m reticent, as I’m not entirely sure that there is a power imbalance. I am however willing to listen and be lobbied either way. As you may imagine, I am likely a friend in court.

    The request here is to the state. To end people being prohibited from accessing civil marriage on the basis of their sexual orientation. We support faith groups maintaining their own interpretation or accepting recognition of same sex marriages. We support freedom OF religion. You insist that only yours is recognised.