Today is the eve of Valentine's Day—a big day for love in the Australian parliament. We have here the first equal marriage bill ever to be introduced in this chamber. Last year, I successfully moved a motion calling on parliamentarians to consult their community about their views on marriage equality. We did that so that it could be understood in this place that outside views have moved on and that people in Australia want to see equality in our marriage laws. At the time I said: Love knows no boundaries. Love knows no limits. And love knows when it has found its partner. There have been many attempts through history to limit love. All have failed. As we move further into the 21st century, I am confident that attempts to limit love will fail again and that full marriage equality will become a reality. Today we are moving closer to that reality. This is an historic day for this parliament and the country. It is an important step forward for human rights. Today is a good day for those who believe in the power of love and the power of love to change things for the better. This bill will amend the Marriage Act to provide equality for same-sex couples. The bill would remove discrimination under the Marriage Act so that marriage, while still a union between two consenting adults, is not defined by gender.
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