Taiwan lawmakers votes in favor of same-sex marriage

Clay Curtis
May 20, 2019

This story was first published on CNN.com, "Taiwan passes same-sex marriage bill, becoming first in Asia to do so." . Just $5 a month.

Even the president of Taiwan, Tsai Ing-wen, celebrated the historic vote. "It is the day Taiwan let the world see the goodness and value of this land", said Tsai on a visit to the southern municipal city of Tainan.

Pro-same sex marriage activist Jennifer Lu said Friday's vote would have a wider impact throughout Asia.

Many carried rainbow-coloured placards reading "the vote can not fail".

Opponents were incensed by the vote, saying the inclusion of the "marriage registration" clause ignored the 70 percent of voters who had cast ballots in the referendum wanting to keep marriage limited to a man and a woman.

During cross-party negotiations earlier in the week, the New Power Party (NPP) put forth a motion to amend the Cabinet's draft bill to allow transnational couples to get married in Taiwan. "It was not an easy matter to get marriage equality legislation through in a country. that espouses traditional Chinese culture".

The religious groups too had their own bill.

The landmark decision cements Taiwan's reputation as a beacon of liberalism in a region where the LGBT community faces increasing persecution, and will give a long-awaited boost to Asia's burgeoning gay rights movement. "It's also a sign to show that Taiwan was different from China", he refers here to the fact that gay marriage is still illegal.

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Many took to social media in celebration, seeing the result as a win for marriage equality.

Now people of the same gender can legally marry and have children in Taiwan. Both sides of the issue have held colorful street demonstrations and lobbied lawmakers.

Conservative groups that oppose same-sex marriage said the legislation disrespected the people's will.

Late a year ago, Taiwan voters opposed same-sex marriage in a series of referendums, defining marriage as being between a man and a woman, while seeking a special law for such unions.

Foxconn Technology Group's billionaire founder Terry Gou, who has announced a run for Taiwan's presidency, expressed misgivings over the new law.

However, legislators favouring the bill, and voting separately on each item largely along party lines, said it followed the law as well as the spirit of the referendum. Parliament was given a two-year deadline to change the law or same-sex couples would automatically be allowed to marry.

It called for legal revision within two years. They plan to register after May 24.

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