Australian political party revives gay marriage debate

CANBERRA – Australia’s political opposition plans to harness momentum from the Irish gay marriage referendum by proposing a law next week that would recognize Australian same-sex marriages. But gay rights advocates have warned against rushing the divided Parliament into a decision.

Labor Party leader Bill Shorten plans to introduce a bill in the House of Representatives on Monday that would change a federal law that specifies marriage can only be between a man and a woman. Shorten said Wednesday that the time was right for Parliament to vote for marriage equality after the weekend referendum in which 62 percent of Irish voters called for their constitution to be changed to allow same-sex marriage. It could be months before Parliament votes on Shorten’s draft law. A similar bill was rejected three years ago.



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