Talk:Same-sex marriage in the UK passes second reading in Commons

Latest comment: 11 years ago by Pi zero in topic Review of revision 1800249 [Passed]

This article is a featured article.
It is considered one of the best works of the Wikinews community.
See the archived discussion.

OR Notes


Made from watching BBC Parliament (12:30-19:30 GMT)


  • House of Commons has filled up while Stephen Mosley introduced a Building Regulations Bill under the 10-minute rule.
  • clerk introduces the business
    • Bercow: four minute limit on backbench speeches. 71 members wish to contribute.

Maria Miller introduces bill:

  • Maria Miller: "you and I know that every marriage is different. Any husband or wife of members of this house has very different challenges to face every day."
    • "mutual support through our lives"
    • "this should be embraced by more couples"
    • "the depth of love and feeling is no different between same-sex couples as between opposite-sex couples" "enabling same-sex couples to marry removes the current distinction and difference"
  • Gerald Kaufman, Labour: asks for a cast iron guarantee for clergy to be forced by the courts or the European Community to carry out weddings
  • Maria Miller: "we have taken very seriously all the points he's made about protection"
    • Stewart Jackson, Conservative, Peterborough: Lord Carey letter - "failed to address the difficult issues of consummation"
    • Maria Miller: no legal requirement for consummation. couples will be able to cite "unreasonable behaviour". issues he raises are dealt with.
  • no single view from religious communities. "not the role of government to tell people what to believe", but they do have the re
  • marriage has been redefined: change for Catholics, equality in the 20th century
  • David Winnick intervention - decriminalisation of homosexuality in 1967: nobody would have opposed it now, nobody will oppose it in the future.
    • Maria Miller: "we don't have to just legislate for today, but for the future"
  • [some labour MP I can't work out who] "why hasn't she confined herself to civil marriage?"
    • Maria Miller: religious groups want to be able to do so if they choose
  • "to those who argue that civil partnerships exist and contain very similar rights, that marriage is just a word and that this bill is unnecessary, I say: this... all couples who enter a lifelong commitment together should be able to call it marriage"
  • Simon Hughes: "not trespass on religious beliefs... will she be open to amendments to the bill... that will give us a much better balance?"
  • MM: we have been working very closely with the Church of England and Church of Wales - both feel they have a good set of protections
  • Rehman Chishti: asks how many Muslims responded to the government consultation.
    • Maria Miller: this is not about numbers, this is about working together. That is the point of debate.
  • Caroline Lucas: the Church of England isn't being given the choice. "The Church of England is not being given choice."
    • Maria Miller: "we are not trying to treat the Church of England differently..." the difference is that the Church of England is they have different duties
  • Maria Miller: "equal marriage should not come at the cost of freedom of faith, freedom of faith should not come at the cost of equal marriage"
  • David Davies: would the UK defy the European Courts if they forced a religious organisation to perform a same-sex wedding?
  • Gerald Howarth: "where does she have a mandate"?

Yvette Cooper:

  • "we don't do fertility tests at the altar"
  • "The idea that the biology of procreation should deny same-sex couples the respect that comes with marriage is to ignore the full richness, the happiness and also the tragedies of family life. For better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and health, that is marriage."

David Winnick:

  • Turing, persecution and disgrace

Nadine Dorries:

  • "The definition of marriage is based on the definition of sex."

Stephen Williams:

  • "Through my teenage years being openly gay was virtually impossible as it was terrifying in terms of the abuse."

Mike Freer:

  • "I'm not asking for special treatment, I'm simply asking for equal treatment."

Emma Reynold:

  • "As law makers it's our responsbility to make sure laws don't discriminate."

David Lammy:

  • "Separate but equal is a fraud. It's the language that tried to push Rosa Parks to the back of the bus."

Stuart Andrew:

  • "Equality measures introduced in the past have changed attitudes and I have been witness to that."

Sarah Wollaston:

  • "In a few years time would anyone's marriage here feel any less valuable? This measure is long overdue."

Ian Paisley Jr (DUP):

  • "Anyone who's a Christian is now going to face Christophobia"

Crispin Blunt (Conservative - Reigate):

  • "semantics matter. Words express the values of society. This bill about marriage is part of the astonishing and wonderful change that has taken place over the last fifty years that has taken millions of us from criminalisation to legal equality and the enjoyment of self-worth and validation. That certainly wasn't apparent to me as a young man. What I understood was that there was something wrong with me that had—HAD—to be mastered. And for three decades I managed that struggle. And the relief and happiness of not having to do so any longer comes from others who fought for all of the measures advancing equality over the last five decades that are the precursors to today's Bill."
  • Wants civil partnerships for straight couples.

Mark Menzies (Con) intervened during Blunt's speech to say that he had been convinced to change from abstaining to supporting the Bill.

John Howell:

  • studied the subject following emails from constituents. Decided that the objections against it did not make a compelling case, has had no reason to change that view. "I cannot comprehend that a gay marriage would undermine a heterosexual marriage".

Ben Gummer (Con, Ipswich)

  • Marriage Act 1836 was introduced to protect Catholics, non-conformists, atheists who couldn't marry except in Anglican churches. The 1836 act was passed "seeking to protect minorities".

Gavin Barwell (Con, Croydon Central):

  • "most difficult issue I've faced in two years as an MP"
  • "Majority of my constituents support it, some do not"
  • "The issue is clear-cut. I have constituents in same-sex relationships who want to get married. I have faith groups in my constituency who want to conduct these marriages. We've heard a lot today about religious freedom. It would be totally wrong for any church or mosque to be forced to conduct a marriage it didn't want to. But it's equally wrong that there are faith groups in this country that want to conduct these marriages but are being prevented from doing so by the current law."
  • no guarantee that the current law couldn't be challenged: "is there any credible risk?"
  • "the Catholic Church policy of not remarrying divorcees has not been challenged"
  • "the most eminent lawyers in the country tell us the risk is inconceivable"

Therese Coffey (Cons: Suffolk Coastal):

  • consultation was inadequate

Kate Green (Shadow Equalities Minister):

  • "the public support it, 3 out of 5 people of faith support it, and most tellingly, there is a changing tide - the generation under 50 by far support it"
  • "we lay down a marker for equality and our society as a whole will be stronger for it"

Hugh Robertson:

  • over 70 speeches this afternoon
  • "lively and impassioned debate" "shown this House at its best"
  • "This is a bill with a very straightforward proposition at its heart: whether extending marriage for same-sex couples strengthens marriage and increases equality or whether it is a threat to religion and society. The Government believes it is the former."
  • Member for Banbury "asked whether the government would be willing to look again at clause 11(5), and I can say to him that we are very happy to look at it"
  • Member for Henley: would the government be open minded? Robertson confirms that they will.
  • responded to questions about the legal position in Denmark: Danish government required people to conduct the ceremonies


  • 400 ayes
  • 175 noes

Tom Morris (talk) 19:50, 5 February 2013 (UTC)Reply

There is also Hansard, which is a cleaned-up version of what was said in Parliament. —Tom Morris (talk) 21:42, 6 February 2013 (UTC)Reply

Review of revision 1800249 [Passed]

Return to "Same-sex marriage in the UK passes second reading in Commons" page.