German lawmakers voted Friday to legalize same-sex marriage, in a landmark decision after Chancellor Angela Merkel dropped her opposition to a free vote on the topic. The bill, which would give homosexual couples in Germany the same rights as heterosexual couples, is expected to pass through the country’s upper house next week. Merkel said Friday that she had voted no on the issue, but understood the importance of putting it to a wider vote of conscience. “For me and the basic law, it’s about the marriage of a woman and a man. That’s why I voted against it,” Merkel said. “I hope that the vote today shows not only the mutual respect for different opinions but that this also leads to more peace and social cohesion as well.”
BREAKING: German lawmakers vote to legalize same-sex marriage in last session before September election.
— The Associated Press (@AP) June 30, 2017