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Religious Tolerance logo

Same-sex marriages (SSM), civil unions, etc.

Argentina's Parliament passes SSM bill.
Part 2

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This is a continuation of Part 1 of this topic

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Timeline of events:

2010-JUL-15: After an impassioned 14 to 16 hour evening debate -- sources differ on its length -- the Senate passed the bill on Thursday AM. The vote was 33 to 27, with three abstentions. The bill had already been passed in the Chamber of Deputies on MAY-05.

On JUL-21, President Cristina Fernandex de Kirchner signed it into law.

On JUL-22, the law was published in the Official Gazette. From that time, loving, committed same-sex couples who are citizens or residents of the country have been able to marry and receive the same rights, privileges and protections for themselves and their children --- including the right to adopt --- as opposite-sex couples have enjoyed for years.

Argentina became the:

  • Tenth country in the world to allow same-sex marriage nationwide, after Belgium, Canada, Iceland, The Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, and Sweden.

  • The first country in Latin America to do so; Mexico City and some other cities in the region allow same-sex marriage, but the remaining jurisdictions in the same countries do not.

  • The second country in the Americas after Canada to offer SSMs.

Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, the country's most senior Catholic prelate, apparently referred to the source of the bill as Satanic. He called the bill: "... a machination of the Father of Lies that seeks to confuse and deceive the children of God." 1 This appears to be a paraphrase of one of the most anti-semitic passages in the New Testament: John 8:44: The passage in the King James Version of the Bible refers to Jews: " Ye are of [your] father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it."

Eduardo Bieule, president of the Corporation of Catholic Lawyers in Buenos Aires said that the government "... committed treason against public opinion by not holding a plebiscite on the issue. I don’t want to think about the legal problems this is going to bring." 2

Senator Eugenio Artaza said: "Just like with divorce, women's right to vote, and civil marriage, with the passage of time we'll be able to appreciate the benefits of this law." 3
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Ines Frank, from Argentine Families Argentina, said that opposition to SSM was not a form of discrimination "... because the essence of a family is between two people of opposite sexes." 4 It certainly has been in Argentine to date.

Lawmaker Alcira Argumedo, from the leftist Proyecto Sur party, suggested that the ruling party's support for SSM may be motivated more by political considerations, than by any concern for equal rights for same-sex couples. She said: "They pay very close attention to opinion polls, and when they saw a significant proportion of the population supported this, that's when they moved to back it."

Sociologist and pollster Roberto Bacman said that support for SSM "... allows the government to always be center stage. They want to show they are the true center-left, forcing the opposition to move to the right in the upcoming national election."

Mexico City offered to pay the cost of airfares from Argentina to Mexico City and Cancun to the first couple to be married under the new law. The city actively sought sponsors among hotels and restaurants to finance the rest of the honeymoon. Alejandro Rojas, the city's tourism secretary, said that the gift was "... a recognition of tolerance, but first and foremost a way to promote gay tourism in Mexico."

The first same-sex marriage was in the Palermo area of Buenos Aires between actor Ernesto Rodriguez Larrese, 60, and Alejandro Vanelli, 61, his partner of 34 years. They had tried to marry three years earlier, but had been refused.

Maria Rachid, head of the Argentine Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transexual Federation, said she expected about 100 same-sex couples will marry close to this date. 5 She also said:

"From today onward, Argentina is a more just and democratic country. [The law] not only recognizes the rights of our families, but also the possibility of having access to health care, to leave a pension, to leave our assets to the people with whom we have shared many years of life, including our children." 6

Evan Wolfson, head of the U.S. Freedom to Marry group said:

"Today's historic vote shows how far Catholic Argentina has come, from dictatorship to true democratic values, and how far the freedom-to-marry movement has come, as 12 countries on four continents now embrace marriage equality. ... America should lead, not lag, when it comes to treating everyone equally under the law." 6

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You Tube video posted by Associated Press:


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A CNN video reported by Rosemary Church:


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References used:

The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.

  1. "Argentina passes same-sex marriage bill,", 2010-JUL-15, at:
  2. Alexi Barrioneuvo, "Argentina approves gay marriage, in a first for region," The New York Times, 2010-JUL-115, at:
  3. Karina Grazina, "Argentina approves landmark gay marriage bill, Reuters, 2010-JUL-15, at:
  4. "Argentine Senate backs bill legalizing gay marriage," BBC News, 2010-JUL-15, at:
  5. "First gay marriage in Argentina set for August 13," AFP, 2010-JUL-16, at:
  6. Michael Warren, "Argentina legalizes gay marriage in historic vote," Yahoo! News, 2010-JUL-15, at:
  7. Argentina backs gay marriage," The Periscope Post, 2010-JUL-16, at:
  8. Rosemary Church, "Same-sex marriage in Argentina," 2010-JUL-15, at:

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Site navigation: Home page > Homosexuality > Same-sex marriage > Menu > here

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Copyright © 2009 to 2011 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Originally written: 2010-JUL-16
Latest update: 2011-JAN-21
Author: B.A. Robinson

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