The amendment has been defeated and will now be read a second time! Thank you Lords!
They’re clearing the room for the vote on Lord Dear’s wrecking amendment. If it passes it can go on to a committee and third reading.
Lord Dear urges peers not to “dwell solely on emotion”
Lord Dear: The government consultation was “frankly, a mockery” and there are doubts about the process in the House of Commons.
Lord Dear: This vote will affect all members of our society.
Baroness Stowell urges peers in favour and undecided to vote against Lord Dear’s amendment – time for the vote!
In response to suggestions that same-sex couples could have their own form of relationships with a different name, Baroness Stowell says “They’re called civil partnerships”. Their introduction has enabled more people to come to accept same-sex marriage.
Norman Tebbit’s question, “Could the child of a monarch in a same-sex relationship succeed to the throne?”, was answered by Baroness Stowell: “Only the natural born child of a husband and wife is entitled to succeed to the throne.” Peers groaned as Lord Tebbit rose and asked “Isn’t that discrimination?”
Baroness Stowell is dealing with questions. She says the consultation on same-sex marriage was the largest ever in England and Wales.
Lord Tebbit just asked Baroness Thornton if his question about lesbian queens was going to be answered. It looks like Baroness Stowell will get that joy.
Baroness Thornton: “I may never say this again – I agree with the evidence Michael Gove gave in the House of Commons.” She says the large majority in favour in the House of Commons wasn’t due to a secret whip, but strength of feeling.
Baroness Thornton: Brilliant theological arguments have been woven against equality, but the state has moved away from religion. The quadruple lock will, at least, protect religious groups.
Lord Norton: For me, same-sex marriage is a matter of freedom. Religious groups should be free to allow or deny same-sex weddings.
Baroness O’Loan has concerns about the lack of a definition for adultery in same-sex couples.
Duke of Montrose: The bill “introduces many pitfalls” – gay couples should stick to civil partnerships.
96% of young LGBT people in secondary school hear homophobic language, and 1 in five who are bullied say teachers never intervene, says Lord Collins. “Being defined as moral and evil is just for starters” – LGBT people are compared to paedophiles and bestiality, which “fuels homophobic bullying”.
Lord Collins: My husband and I have taken every opportunity to celebrate our relationship, including a civil partnership. I’m glad some of the people who opposed civil partnerships have had a change of heart – hopefully they will not frustrate this move to full equality.
Lord Collins: “Britain can now claim to be a beacon to the world of equality for gay people.”
Baroness Jenkin: I’m a small-seat Conservative so I don’t like change – but same-sex marriage will be “radical” in a good way. It is controversial, but so was decriminalising homosexuality.
The Earl of Clancarty: No church should have a monopoly over marriage. This will be the meaning of equality. A gay religious person should be able to get married.
The Earl of Clancarty: “Young people’s opinion is well in advance of the legislation itself.”
Lord Glenarthur: Marriage is as important as a nonreligious institution as it is as a religious one. However, it is based on the difference and complimentarity between men and women.
Baroness Turner of Camden says there have been great steps toward equality, despite a small number of people who continue to commit homophobic violence. She says in the past a married woman was her husband’s property. Progress towards equality didn’t detract from marriage then.
Lord Bates: I have serious reservations about the bill that need to be addressed – but the House of Lords is the best place to do that.
Lord Bates: Marriage is irreplaceable. The health and wealth benefits are huge. Opening that up to more people won’t change that – it will “survive and adapt”.
Homophobic crime in Sweden fell by 28% after equal marriage was introduced, says Viscount Colville.
The Church originally did not recognise marriage, and it only became a religious ceremony in the 11th Century, points out Viscount Colville.
Children will be confused by the same-sex marriage bill, as official forms will have to use language like “Progenitor A” and “Progenitor B” instead of “father” and “mother”, says Lord Vinson. We’re impressed that his children are filling out official forms for him!
Equal marriage “defies common sense”, says Lord Vinson. “Husband” and “wife” will become “sexless words”.
Lord Faulkner: New Zealand legalised equal marriage with huge rejoicing and singing a traditional love song. Nowhere in scripture are loving same-sex relationships envisioned – but neither are nuclear bombs. You have to look to Biblical principles, like love.
“With our average age” we are not the best judges of public opinion, Lord Cope tells peers.
There is no reason to overrule the elected MPs in the House of Lords, says Lord Cope of Berkeley.
Lord Jay: To share with others what we value ourselves is a sign of a civilised, tolerant, and Christian society.
Lord Jay of Ewelme says he strongly supports the bill. He remembers that, when he worked in his younger days in the Foreign Office, people who were found out to be gay had to resign.
Lord Eden: The effect on children and their values could be “influenced” by the bill. Material produced by Stonewall for use in primary schools will cause “confusion”.
According to Lord Eden, marriage “counts for very little” in Sweden since same-sex marriage was legalised.
Lord Eden of Winton says the bill will detract from marriage by altering the meaning for everyone.
Lord Elis-Thomas spoke of the day he can have a “son and a son-in-law” and said the law of marriage should be devolved, as in “the golden age of Medieval Welsh law”, so Welsh Anglicans can determine whether to offer same-sex marriage.
Lord Elis-Thomas: “I am a communter from Cardiff Central… That gives me the opportunity to reflect.” He argues that Lord Dear’s amendment goes against the “logic” of the House of Lords as a revising body.
Lord Brennan: There are “at least five fundamental differences between heterosexual marriage and homosexual marriage” as the bill stands.
Lord Brennan tells Lord Carlile “have a care” when urging Parliament to lead the country – “This deserves much more careful debate”. He supports Lord Dear’s amendment.
Civil partnerships have served the needs of same-sex couples “comprehensively”, while marriage is not “the people’s wish”, says Lord Brennan.
Lord Brennan says “this bill may have background about love, but we are here to make law.”
Sexual orientation will become less of an issue if the bill passes, says Lord Faulks.
Lord Faulks has “reservations” about the Human Rights Act, but says the quadruple lock makes the bill “Strasbourg-proof” – at least for now.
Lord Aberdare says his marriage is one of the most important parts of his life, and he would be happy to “share” that with same-sex couples.
Lord Mackay is arguing that marriage is an anti-incestuous procreation measure, so same-sex couples should be excluded.
The bill has missed out on the opportunity to allow Humanist weddings, says Lord Birt.
Lord Birt says the bill “goes the whole hog” to allow gay couples to “feel free to present their partners with pride”. He has “not a scintilla of hesitation”.
Lord Birt says he didn’t know what homosexuality was back in the 1960s!
Lord Carlile has spoken of his daughter, who “found constant love” with another woman. He argues their love deserves the same recognition, through marriage, that they could have had with their past, “unenduring”, relationships with men.
Lord Carlile: Parliament has a duty to lead, as well as to follow public consensus
Lord Alli: “I heard echoes of [Section 28] last night”. Teachers being forced to teach about homosexuality is a lie, he says.
Marriage doesn’t belong to one people or religious group, argues gay peer Lord Alli – it’s about love. He is arguing that, while the Church of England may largely oppose same-sex marriage, other churches want to offer it. He asks the government to show “leadership” on the issue.
Lord Alli is on now, arguing for the right of everyone to say “Not tonight dear, I have a headache”.
Baroness Noakes rejects arguments made yesterday that gay people should get their own word for “marriage”. Any suggestions?
The debate has resumed in the House of Lords! Baroness Noakes is speaking first.
The House of Lords debate has been adjourned. We’ll be back tomorrow!
Lord Flight says it is not right to ‘railroad’ through the same-sex marriage bill
Lord Flight, who was the MP for Arundel and South Downs until he was deselected and replaced with openly gay Nick Herbert
Lord Phillips of Sudbury is speaking now. Only one more speaker to go!
Labour peer Baroness Gould of Potternewton is talking about Lucy Meadows when dealing with the trans issues in the Marriage bill
Labour peer Baroness Gould of Potternewton is giving the trans arguments on changing the law on marriage
Conservative peer Earl Courtown says that same-sex marriage will be a net gain, nothing is lost
The Bishop of Exeter says that such a change in the law has not happened outside of totalitarian states
Conservative peer Baroness Berridge says that Western Europe is out of step with the rest of the world in becoming less religious, not more religious. She opposes the bill but will not vote for Lord Dear’s amendment as the bill needs revising.
Baroness Mallalieu says that we’ll look back at the time that gay couples couldn’t marry in the way we look back in horror at teachers striking the hand of a child who wrote with a left hand
Earl of Shrewsbury and Waterford says that he will be abstaining from Lord Dear’s amendment
Lord Deben (John Gummer): I voted against civil partnerships because they were a fraud. Labour told gays it was marriage and straights it was not.
Conservative Lord Deben (John Gummer) says that on the basis of science, the state should not prevent gay couples from marrying
Lord Carey: The consultative process has been a sham. He also claims that the Conservatives would not have been to be able to form a Government if it had included same-sex marriage in its main manifesto.
Former Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Carey, is speaking in the House of Commons right now
Lord Framlingham says voting against equal marriage will allow the House of Lords to show its relevance
Conservative peer Lord Framlingham says equal marriage is a symbol of how far Britain has ‘lost its moral compass’
Lord Browne says that marriage is a social not a religious construct
Former BP CEO Lord Browne of Madingley is now speaking in the debate in favour of same-sex marriage
Lord Tebbit gives his usual argument that gay men can get married, just only to a woman
Conservative peer Lord Edmiston says that 3 people should be allowed to get married if marriage is defined as ‘people in love’
Methodist minister Baroness Richardson of Calow said that she will support same-sex marriage
Lord Garel-Jones has said that he is delighted that same-sex marriage is supported by all three party leaders
Senior Reform Rabbi Baroness Neuberger is now speaking in favour of same-sex marriage
Lord Blair of Boughton: I hope that the Anglican church will unlock the ‘quadruple lock’
Former police chief Lord Blair of Boughton: “The tide of history is only running in one direction”. He called equal marriage a “great and noble cause”
Lord Cormack: Equal marriage is the most “profound piece of social engineering that has been put before Parliament”
Lord Smith is now speaking about the differences between civil partnerships and marriages
Labour peer Lord Campbell-Savours cites Alan Duncan and Chris Bryant’s comments during civil partnerships where they said that same-sex marriage would not be the consequence of civil partnerships
Lord Black of Brentwood says that he supports same-sex marriage because he is a Conservative and is gay
Conservative peer Baroness Knight of Collingtree has equated being gay to being blind. She added that same-sex marriage was the same as women having sperm and a man giving birth.
DUP peer Lord Browne of Belmont said that the issue of same-sex marriage should be returned to at the 2015 election
Conservative peer Viscount Astor has said that he supports equal marriage
The House of Lords has resumed its debate on equal marriage
The Lords are now taking a break from equal marriage for a statement on the EU and Woolwich
Former Bishop of Oxford, Lord Harries of Pentregarth says that all couples should be able to enter into marriages
Baroness Cumberlege says that LGBT community should find a new word, not ‘marriage’
Lord Harries of Pentregarth: I take a high view of a civil partnerships
Labour peer Lord Anderson of Swansea: Stonewall has only recently come to support same-sex marriage
Conservative peer Lord Jenkin of Roding: It will be a positive good for marriage in general
Lord Jenkin of Roding: It is pure fantasy that this bill will redefine marriages that already exist
Bishop Leicester says that he will abstain if there is a vote on the second reading on Marriage (Same-sex couples) Bill
Bishop Leicester says that the bill has been introduced too quickly to consider the implications of equality
Lord Pannick is almost point by point tearing down Lord Dear’s argument
Lord Waddington ending by saying this Bill is a “big mistake” earlier (sorry we had a technical issue earlier)
Lord Pannick is pointing out how the laws on marriage and divorce have been changed throughout history
Lord Waddington is now speaking in favour of Lord Dear’s wrecking amendment to protect the “essential nature” of marriage. It’s “no disrespect to anyone, just common sense” to have different unions for same-sex and opposite-sex couples, he says.
Baroness Brinton quotes from religious organisations that support equality in marriage
Baroness Brinton: I have found it hard to find Jesus speaking against same-sex marriage in the New Testament
Baroness Brinton: The cheers in the Lords on the first reading of the Alan Turing pardon bill shows that society is moving on about LGBT rights
Baroness Kennedy says that marriage has been changed a lot in the past
Baroness Kennedy: It is people aged over 60 who express the greatest concern in changing the law, the same age as average age in the House of Lords
Lord Fowler: It was we the British who first made homosexuality a criminal offence in other countries like Uganda. Equal marriage will show how much how society has changed and show support for the persecuted minorities in our country. It will show gay people the right to expect ‘nothing more, but nothing less’
Lord Fowler: I’ve seen equality fiercely denied in a country like Ukraine and in Uganda.
Lord Fowler: There are many religious gay couples who wish to get married in churches
Lord Fowler: It is a wonder to me that civil partnerships are now so popular among people who opposed it before!
Lord Fowler said the Lords can not and should not block a free vote bill in the House of Commons
Archbishop of Canterbury says he “cannot support the bill as it stands”
Archbishop of Canterbury says that homophobia is ‘wrong and sickening’
Archbishop of Canterbury said he opposes Lord Dear’s amendment to kick out Marriage (same sex couple) bill at the second reading.
The Archbishop of Canterbury is speaking now and has said that most faith groups are opposed to equal marriage
Baroness Barker tells peers about employers like Nike and Microsoft that help LGBT staff fight inequality in the US because it is good for business
Baroness Royall says that the terms of reference for a civil partnerships review will be published during the committee stage of the bill
Speaking for the Labour party, Baroness Royall said that the bill has the Labour Party’s firm support. After wishing the anti-gay marriage Archbishop of York a speedy recovery, she also said she is glad that the Church of England now supports civil partnerships.
Baroness Royall said that she wishes there to be changes to pension arrangements for same-sex couples and to resolve issues relating to Humanist marriages.
Baroness Stowell of Beeston introduced the bill for the Government. She is a Conservative whip.
Lord Dear, a former police chief argued that the bill should not pass its second reading in the House of Lords. He quoted from Alice in Wonderland and claimed that equal marriage will cause more not less homophobia. He also argued that gay couples are now being given more rights that families. He also criticised the decision by the Government to announce review of civil partnerships.