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Today the same-sex marriage changes to the Australian Marriage Act have been passed by the country’s Senate, 43 votes to 12, the first such passing of a marriage equality bill in history and is now just one week away from being law.

The final moments saw speeches by many Senators including Labor’s Penny Wong, Liberal’s George Brandis and The Greens’ Richard Di Natale amidst applause from the gallery and tears from Senators across the chamber.

It was then left to Liberal Senator Dean Smith to speak last before the vote sent the bill to the House of Reps.


“Every senator has brought honour to their state in the debate, and that the debate has drawn out intellect, wisdom and compassion,” Dean Smith said.

“In this debate, we saw the soul of the attorney, the lived experience of Senator Wong, Senator Rice and Senator Pratt.

“Most of the real winners of this legislation, we will never meet. We will never truly know what it means for the young Australian boy or girl who is working out that they are gay or lesbian or intersex or transgender. They will quickly realise they have nothing to fear.

“But a few brief moments of joy is what our country has ached for.

The leader of the Government in the Senate, Senator George Brandis said, “We should acknowledge and respect the historic nature of this occasion. We should rejoice what the Australian people have achieved this year.”

Leader of the Opposition in the Seate, Senator Penny Wong said,”This same-sex marriage legislation says to young LGBTQI people that Australia accepts you for who you are.”

The leader of The Greens Senator Richard Di Natale said, “I am so proud of my team, i am so proud of this parliament and I am so proud of this country.”

17 Senators abstained from the vote.

Last Updated on Nov 29, 2017

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