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MPs approve legislation for same-sex marriage

YES: MPs vote in favour of plans to allow gay marriage

MPs have voted in favour of the Governments plan to introduce a same-sex bill in England and Wales, despite opposition from several members of the Conservative party.

There were 400 votes if favour, while 175 members of parliament voted against the proposals.

It was won by a majority of 225.

The vote was concluded following a series of debates that at the House of Commons earlier today.

It allows couples who had previously entered into civil partnerships to convert their relationship into a marriage.

Labour MP David Lammy gave a speech to the House detailing his reasons for supporting the reforms to allow gay couples to lawfully wed.

The Tottenham MP drew parallels with the experience that blacks received in the past, saying: "Today should be one of atonement for the House", reeling off historical examples when parliament had backed homophobic legislation, such as when the Earl of Harlsbury labelled gay people as a “reservoir for venereal diseases”.

However, Lammy reserved his most powerful rhetoric for employing the parallel of the race and gay rights struggle.

He took particular issue with the phrase, “separate but equal”, which has been used by those arguing that no reform was needed because gay people can already have civil partnerships.

“‘Separate but equal’ is a fraud," said Lammy.

“[It] is the language that tried to push Rosa Parks to the back of the bus."

Prime Minister David Cameron, also in favour of the bill, called it "an important step forward that will make our society stronger".

MPs are now going to gather for a second vote to decide how the bill is to be implemented.

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