Weeks after Australians voted in favor of legalizing same-sex marriage in a referendum, a member of parliament seized the opportunity to ask his partner to marry him.
Tim Wilson, a member of the Liberal party and Australia’s lower house of parliament, proposed to his partner through tears during a debate on the same-sex marriage bill today (Dec. 4) in Canberra. His partner, Ryan Bolger, was sitting in the public gallery and gave an affirmative response to the proposal. Though same-sex marriage has been illegal in Australia, the couple has been wearing engagement rings for seven years.
Last month, more than 60% of Australians said they wanted marriage equality in the country following a national postal survey. Prime minister Malcolm Turnbull, also of the Liberal party, said that same-sex marriage would be made a reality by Christmas. Nearly 80% of those eligible in Australia participated in the postal ballot.
The same-sex marriage bill was introduced to the House of Representatives this morning, after passing the Senate last week. Some members of parliament want to introduce amendments that, for example, allow religious ministers to officiate same-sex weddings. If there are any amendments, the Senate will need to approve them—after which marriage equality will basically be a done deal in Australia.