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April 15, 2013 | by  | in News |
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Third Time Lucky

Colin Craig’s and Bob McCroskie’s high media profiles will soon become a thing of the past, with Parliament set to approve marriage equality at a third and final reading this Wednesday, 17 April.

The Third Reading is the final parliamentary step in the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill’s passage, before it is given Royal Assent by the Governor-General. At the First Reading, the Bill passed by 80 votes to 40—this dropped to 77 to 44 at the Second Reading.

The Bill is likely to pass, as MPs seldom change their minds so late in the process.

The public gallery for the reading is expected to be packed out early on, after a full gallery at the Second Reading. Many are expected to celebrate the Bill’s passing at Parliament, but it will also be televised nationwide on Parliament TV, shown on screens at the venue, and at some bars in the city. A picnic at Parliament grounds is organised for 6 pm on the night.

Marriage equality has been a long time coming for the LGBTQ community and supporters alike, according to Convener of the Campaign for Marriage Equality Conrad Reyners.

“We can’t wait to celebrate this historic change that will ensure equal treatment for all. Kiwis know that it is time for marriage equality.”

Polls have shown over 80 per cent of under-25s are in favour of the Bill, and over 90 per cent of students.

“I think that marriage equality is a long time coming. NZ was the first to give women the vote; I’m surprised that we weren’t the first to support equal marriage,” said Arts student Lana Burns.

When asked about the Bill, Bachelor of Commerce student Jake Glover had a warning for its proponents.

“It sucks. God will punish you for your sins.”

Some students are becoming increasingly unenthusiastic over the Bill, including Design student Chris Kennedy.

“Nobody cares anymore; Salient should report some real news,” said Kennedy.

In last week’s episode of New Zealand political panel programme Back Benches, the first of the year, National MP Louise Upston stated that she was against the Bill due to the changes it will cause to adoption laws. However, when pressed on what she found wrong with same-sex couples adopting children, she couldn’t find a specific reason for her opposition.

The Bill will follow in the footsteps of other New Zealand laws such as the Homosexuality Law Reform Act 1986 and the Civil Union Act 2004.

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