Peers defeat attempt to kill gay marriage bill

05/06/2013 16:22

Campaigners for same sex marriage welcome the result after a wrecking amendment was defeated by 390 to 148 votes.
Two men kissing outside the Houses of Parliament
Opponents of gay marriage suffered a significant setback on Tuesday night when peers from across the House of Lords overwhelmingly defeated an attempt to kill the parliamentary bill equalising marriage.
Campaigners for same-sex marriage hailed the result after a wrecking amendment, tabled by the former West Midlands chief constable, Lord Dear, was defeated by 390 to 148 votes, a majority of 242.
Ben Summerskill, the chief executive of Stonewall, said: "We always expected a tough challenge in the House of Lords, and Lord Dear's 'fatal motion' – very rarely used – demonstrates the lengths to which a minority of peers are, sadly, still prepared to go to deny full equality to lesbian, gay and bisexual people."
But opponents of the bill vowed to continue their fight against the marriage (same-sex couples) bill, which now moves to line-by-line examination at its committee stage in the Lords. Colin Hart, campaign director for the Coalition for Marriage, warned the government that peers would be prepared to vote down the bill at its third reading in the Lords unless further safeguards are introduced.