GERMANY: Marriage Bill Clears Upper Chamber Of Parliament, But Bavaria Vows Constitutional Challenge

Deutsche Welle reports:

A vote was not necessary in the upper house of Germany’s parliament, the Bundesrat, on Friday, because no state challenged the draft legislation.

The original proposal for the law – and a large part of the initial pressure on Angela Merkel’s government to act – had come from the Bundesrat, where “marriage for all” (“Ehe für alle”) twice won majority support.

Bavaria’s conservative Justice Minister Winfried Bausback criticized the “surprising and hurried process” in the lower house, saying it was unworthy of the subject.

He also told the Bundesrat that Bavaria’s Christian Social Union (CSU) continued to oppose the measure, and planned to call on the Constitutional Court to check whether the new law conforms with the constitution.

  • bkmn

    Take it up to the EU Court of Justice – I have a feeling they are pretty much in favor of equality. Of course the threat of taking it to court is simply a delay tactic.

  • j.martindale

    They drag their feet the same way they drag their knuckles. What is it about southerners that makes them so slow? Do their brains bake too long in the sun or something?

    • Halou

      On the opposite side of the equator it seems to be the further north you go the more homophobic / transphobic a country is.

      Argentina is a decent place, not great but decent, however Brazil just to the north has one of if not the worst LGBT murder rates on earth. South Africa is the only African country with LGBT references in it’s constitution, it surely isn’t well enforced but it at least exists which is better than anywhere else on the continent. New Zealand is also more progressive than Australia.

  • TrueWords

    This is a done deal…

    This is why I so wish America would do away with a Two Party system

    • j.martindale

      I think you mean a bicameral legislature.

      • TrueWords

        YES…we need to have coalitions to work within our government…as our nation has grown in population and diversity it is becoming more and more essential…

        • Reality.Bites

          Not necessarily. What you do need, however, is a multi-party system that allows parties to die or split or combine.

          In my life in Canada and the provinces of Ontario and Quebec, I have been governed by the Liberal Party, the NDP, the Union Nationale, the Parti Québécois, the Progressive Conservative Party and the Conservative Party.

          Only the Liberal and PC parties existed when I was born 59 years ago. And the PC party no longer exists at the federal level in Canada.

          This is usual in a democracy.

          • It’s not going to happen in the USA under our Constitution. Our system of government favors two parties. Third parties simply peter out– like the Progressives did in 1912 when Teddy Roosevelt ran against Taft and Wilson, when the Dixiecrats and Strom Thurmond ran in 1948, when George Wallace ran in 1968, when Perot ran in 1992 and 96— they tend to be around candidates and single issues and do not last. We have a system which has favored two parties in a winner take all system since our foundation as a Republic. We will have to redo our Constitution for proportional voting and representation, and that is not going to happen anytime soon. Canada has a Parliamentary British type system — not direct election of a President like we do. You do not vote for Trudeau — you vote for your Member of Parliament who is aligned with his party for example, correct? Like the UK—

    • Bluto

      The GOP is doing their damnest to do just that.

      • Yes and you can be sure that moderate Democrats in Red and Purple states and districts will have Green and other left party opponents, helped by Russian voting hacking and right-wing money, to drain off votes in 2018 to keep Republicans in power in Congress — just like Jill Stein got in November 2016. Every last vote will count next November!

  • Bluto
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  • TheManicMechanic

    Christians are garbage, once again.

  • JT

    Bavaria, the deep South of Germany.

    • That_Looks_Delicious

      The analogy doesn’t hold. Bavaria is actually the wealthiest part of Germany, except for the little city-states of Hamburg and Bremen. Their GDP per capita is almost twice that of the states from the former East Germany. It is conservative, but it’s conservative for different reasons than our Deep South.

      • JT

        Religion is a big factor in both cases.

      • fuow

        Speaking as a Bavarian, not a German-American, a LOT of the “Mir San Mir” shit in my homeland is from precisely the same motivations as the shit in the U.S. South.

        • That_Looks_Delicious

          Fascinating. What does “mir san mir” mean? I don’t know much about Germany, but I did meet a couple of German guys (Otto and Manfred) when I was in Madrid and they seemed really nice. But I do remember Otto saying that he didn’t like Bavaria for some reason (he was from the Rhineland, I think).

  • Acronym Jim

    Methinks Bavaria doth protest too much.

    http://photo.sf.co.ua/g/43/16.jpg

  • Halou

    How exactly is this a “hurried process”?
    Belgium went from giving legal recognition of cohabitation in 2000 to marriage for LGBT couples in 2003, a three year process. But ever since Germany recognized “Registered Life Partnerships” in 2001 it has been going way too fast. /s

    • Friday

      They mean they wanted a few more years to fundraise off hate-politicking and proclaiming someone else almost being able to get married is ‘reverse-oppressing’ them. 🙂

      • John30013

        We heard this same tied refrain from the usual haters in the U.S. when marriage equality picked up stream in the state legislatures. Suddenly there needed to be a lot more time to “discuss” the issue, even though it had been discussed and debated for at least 10 years.

  • Friday

    For religious fanatics obsessed with hate-politicking they sure love to suddenly claim they didn’t have time to consider this or say all manner of anti-LGBT stuff.

  • -M-

    Years go by and they’re still trying to act like this is an untested experiment, and no one’s had time to consider the pros and cons.

    Then: We can’t even consider recognizing same-sex marriages.
    Now: We need to argue about this longer, for reasons.

    It’s called stalling. We see you.

  • MaryJOGrady

    There are good reasons why the Bavarians are known as the Texans of Germany. –sigh–

    • They are really friendly in Bavaria. In fact, people are charming — its a generalization but my experience in terms of business or just socializing, they are some of the nicest people you will come across. I used to travel on consulting engagements, I must have spent about 300 days there and also vacationed there.

      • Hryflex

        They are. Personally, I’d rather be in Hamburg. The Hambouigs (I can’t spell it correctly) are strange. Jump over the friendly hoops (and there are lots of them) and you will find wonderful funny people who will give you a room in their house, but don’t try your German on them… they want to try their English on you! Gay? Seriously? Before the War Hamburg was gayer than Berlin.

      • MaryJOGrady

        I agree that Bavarians can be very friendly and charming. (So can Texans, speaking as a former Texan.) As in Texas, though, quite a few of the political attitudes are horrific, and as in Texas I think the religious influence on the society is to blame.

  • Mike in NC

    This helps explain why BMWs (BAVARIAN Motor Works) are the preferred cars of assholes the world over!

    • my thought as well.
      spot on.

    • Ben in Oakland

      Buttheads mit wheels

  • JWC

    it will pass

    • Jean-Marc in Canada

      Easier than the orange kidney stone that America needs to pass.

      • JWC

        oh you know it BC is on fire 80 wildfires yesterday 140 this morning and 180 by noon bring your weinnies and marhsmallows and looooong stick

  • Ben in Oakland

    I just sent this to my Bavarian family in Germany. go thou and do likewise.

    Hello, everyone,

    As you may know, the Bundestag passed a marriage equality bill last week. The Bavarian government– shades of Franz Josef Strauss!!!!– is considering a constitutional challenge to the new law, for all of the usual and bigoted reasons.

    Please contact your Bundestag representative and tell them that marriage equality is the right thing to do, and that a constitutional challenge is exactly the wrong thing to do: for gay people, for marriage, for equality, for Bavaria, and for Germany.

    Thanks.

    • Hryflex

      Sorry. All of my German family are in NRW, Rheinland-Pfalz, and the Schwarzwald. I cannot repeat what my cousin from NRW, who grew up in a village of 600 people in the middle of F-ing nowhere, thinks of Bayerische conservatives. 600 people, and two of his best friends were out in high school. And nobody blinked.

      • Hryflex

        I should also mention that I’m the director of the local Maennerchor (which is mehr Damen als Herren — when I enter the room the median age gets younger). The chair of the German Club is openly gay and the Club has lots of active gay members.

      • Ben in Oakland

        It turns out most of the hub’s family is on the enclave of Baden wurttemberg carved out of Bavaria. However, I wrote to the ones in Bavaria,

  • Ninja0980

    There will never be an acceptable period for you bigots so how about you just shut the fuck up and go away.

    • Jean-Marc in Canada

      Exactly. The world is slowly, but inexorably moving forward; sometimes at a glacial pace, but forward nonetheless. They’re but stones and rock that, inevitably, will be pushed down or out of the way of said progressive glacier.

  • Stubenville

    For those of you unfamiliar with German politics, Bavaria is the most conservative area of the country (but you probably figured that out.)

    • David L. Caster

      Majority Catholic?

      • Southern and Western Germany are Catholic.

        • David L. Caster

          Interesting story. Thanks.

    • JWC

      sort of like the bible belt of south easter US?

      • Not quite as bad — for example, the fund the fine arts in Bavaria and education in ways that the Bible Belt area can only dream about. Public health care is a given fact in all of Bavaria — they just will not accept marriage equality as the influence of the RC Church is strong, like Austria, Switzerland, and Italy. It does not have an anti-clerical tradition like Spain and France for that matter — where the RC Church has less of an influence perhaps in politics. But, when you are in Munich its not Hamburg or Berlin. Its different. I have to admit I love visiting the place, I spent 10 years traveling there on consulting and really enjoyed it.

        • JWC

          Thanx for the update

        • jonfromcalifornia

          Bavaria is where the archconservative “Hitlerjugend” Pope Benedict XVI (Joseph Ratzinger) was born and bred.

      • grada3784

        Probably not quite as sodomitic.

  • ultragreen

    That’s ironic in a way, because some of Bavaria’s most popular tourist attractions were created by Ludwig II of Bavaria, the so-called “Mad King” or “Swan King.” These attractions included fairyland castles, opera houses, and fine artwork. He was also the primary patron of the composer, Richard Wagner, because he was fond of Wagner’s opera. Ludwig II was gay of course.

    • If you want to read something interesting, take a look at this description of the inaugural concert at Richard Wagner’s Bayreuth Festival in the great music hall in Bavaria in 1876 with a performance of Das Rheingold, the first opera in the Ring Cycle. Here is a list of some of those present — Kaiser Wilhelm (the first), Dom Pedro II of Brazil, King Ludwig (who attended in secret, probably to avoid the Kaiser), Friedrich Nietzsche, Anton Bruckner, Edvard Grieg, Pyotr Tchaikovsky, and Franz Liszt. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bayreuth_Festival

  • Mihangel apYrs

    They have form – they murdered Ludowig, their King

  • MikeinATL

    Bavaria’s position is unfortunate. Just when I had convinced my partner to go to Munich… Oh well, lots of other places to visit.

  • customartist

    Bavarian Ministry of Economic Affairs and Media, Energy and Technology

    Bayerisches Staatsministerium
    für Wirtschaft und Medien,
    Energie und Technologie
    Prinzregentenstraße 28
    80538 München
    Telefon: 089 2162-0
    Telefax: 089 2162-2760

    Translation:

    Bavarian Ministry of Economic Affairs and Media, Energy and Technology
    Bavarian Ministry of State
    For business and the media,
    Energy and technology
    Prince Regent Street 28
    80538 Munich, Germany
    Phone: 089 2162-0
    Fax: 089 2162-2760