Gay Marriage Wins In France After Crucial Senate Vote

Two men kiss during a demonstration in support of the legalization of gay marriage and LGBT parenting in France. (Getty Images)

Two men kiss during a demonstration in support of the legalization of gay marriage and LGBT parenting in France. (Getty Images)

Mariage pour tous: les sénateurs disent oui!

France will become the next nation to fully recognize same-sex unions, extending them the freedom to marry. Though President François Hollande’s Socialist party did not have an outright senate majority, the principal section of the “marriage for all” bill was approved on Tuesday with a vote of 179-to-157.

“Despite attempts to obstruct the right, the Senate has adopted Article 1 which allows same-sex couples to marry,” said François Rebsamen of the Socialist party, reports the AFP. Article 1 removes the opposite gender requirement for those wishing to marry. 

“Given the abuses that took place either by manifestations of violence in the street, either by verbal exaggerations in the chamber, the vote on this article marks a victory for the fight against homophobia, for tolerance and democracy,” added Rebsamen.

Just weeks ago, hundreds of thousands took to the streets of Paris to denounce same-sex marriage. The demonstrations took a violent turn as riot police clashed with protesters, firing tear gas into the crowd.

After the bill is approved, as is now expected, the measure will not return to the National Assembly—where it passed 329-to-229 in February—for a second reading as long as it is not amended by the Senate.

Gay and lesbian couples in France will be able to marry by summer 2013, though a specific date will not be announced until the bill is signed into law.

Previously: French Assembly Passes Gay Marriage, Adoption Bill