BERMUDA: UK-Appointed Governor Approves Repeal Of Same-Sex Marriage, Replaced With Domestic Partners

The Bermuda News reports:

The Governor has given assent to the Domestic Partnership Act 2017, Government House has just confirmed, meaning the legislation can now take effect. In a statement this afternoon [Feb 7], Governor John Rankin said, “After careful consideration in line with my responsibilities under the Constitution, I have today given assent to the Domestic Partnership Act 2017.”

The Domestic Partnerships Act passed in the House of Assembly, and then passed in the Senate and will replace same-sex marriages with a domestic partnership which can be entered into by both same-sex and heterosexual couples.

Once approved in both the House [24-10] and Senate [8-3], the Bill went to the UK-appointed Governor for assent, which is normal procedure and generally seen as a formality, however it was been a topic of speculation in this case since the Bill was passed in December 2017.

Bermuda is one of the 14 British Overseas Territories and is now the second place in the world to repeal same-sex marriage. California was the first. Same-sex marriages conducted overseas and in Bermuda before today will continue to be recognized.

It’s believed that the Bermuda-flagged cruise ships that have been offering at-sea same-sex marriages will now drop that service. When Bermuda’s Parliament voted to repeal last year, official tourism agencies for the island raised loud alarms.

The push to repeal same-sex marriage in Bermuda was aided, unsurprisingly, by US-based Christian hate groups including the Alliance Defending Freedom.

  • Kelly Lape


  • aagold76 .


  • Ragnar Lothbrok

    Going backwards will not last.

  • Treant

    After careful* consideration, I’ve decided not to buy anything made in Bermuda, nor to visit. You break it, you bought it–because I won’t buy anything from you.

    * Probably more than he give this at about 4 seconds.

  • pch1013

    Elsewhere in the Americas: a homophobic evangelical preacher beat all other candidates in the first round of presidential voting in Costa Rica.

    The march of fascism is global.

  • gaycuckhubby
    • Treant

      Sherman has a point.

      The Republicans aren’t the only party with more than two factions. Ours do tend to stick together when push comes to shove, but that really isn’t the case here. We’re in a strange condition where I can see both sides of the argument for and against the vote and don’t really blame either contingent for supporting what they think.

      • gaycuckhubby


      • The_Wretched

        Spending vs taking a hit on immigration (not a small issue for dem voters).

      • Strepsi

        I think they should allow the government to shut down and pin it all on the GOP. Only problem is that the Dems are TERRIBLE at propaganda or controlling the narrative, and the Republicans are excellent at it.

        • Treant

          The “problem” with the Democrats is that they hesitate to do direct harm to people by starving them, assuring they can’t afford their medications, or otherwise reducing options available to them. I approve of that.

          • Strepsi

            true treant

        • The_Wretched

          MSM is also owned and operated by the same people who own and operate the Republicans.

    • KP

      Politico and Jake Sherman absolutely LIVE for Dems in disarray stories like this while constantly ignoring or playing dumb about the damage the Tea party, neo-nazis, Koch Brothers does to the Rethuglicans. It’s always OK if you are Republican at Politico. Jake Sherman at Politico is really Rona Barrett at Tiger Beat.

  • The Trump Contamination spreads across the globe with ease.

  • GeneInSJ

    No matter how you cut it, this is just a cruel thing to do.

  • Lars Littlefield

    More Important: Tillerson has just said publicly that “We can’t really do anything to prevent Russia from hacking our elections.”

    Fuck that shit.

    • The_Wretched

      Hand counted paper ballot & same day registration might get us most or all of the way there. Just guessing a little.

      • greenmanTN

        IMO one of the most important issues in this country is to get rid of “paperless” voting machines. There HAS to be a paper trail that can be recounted.

        • (((GC)))

          AMEN! A wide variety of DRE (direct recording electronic) voting machines have been studied by computer security experts; every single one was vulnerable to hacking. One possible attack involved the storage cards used to collect vote counts spreading malware from machine to machine.

          Paper ballots can be counted by scanners, and recounted by hand, whether as part of a random audit for gauging confidence in the reported results, or a full recount. Each paper ballot is a tangible record of how a voter voted, and it is extremely difficult to tamper with ballots en masse.

        • JackFknTwist

          As the Netherlands and Ireland have done.

        • Chris Baker

          But if the machines are hacked, a paper trail won’t do any good, because the paper trail will be wrong too.

          • greenmanTN

            Presumably the voter sees the paper ballot and confirms that it reflects their vote accurately. Then afterward, if need be, those ballots can be counted by hand to confirm the vote. With paperless machines you can’t do that’s the computer will always tell you that the vote is correct and you have no way to dispute it.

          • Chris Baker

            Ah, OK. Sorry, I was thinking of the machines we use. There is a roll of paper that prints the votes but the voter doesn’t see it. (they can see it, in a small window, but it’s not easy to read.)

            I think, and I am no expert, but rigging machines would be very complicated, as each precinct is different (mine is highly democratic, for example, and others are highly republican). And in my precinct we usually have 3 to 6 voting machines (based on if it’s a primary, local, or national election. they are connected to a network, or connected to each other, and are set up weeks before the election because the county has a thousand or so machines, and 2 weeks of early voting). You would have to know just how to adjust the vote just enough to get your candidate to win, but not so much that the vote count is suspicious. My precinct is 80% democratic, so if a Republican won by 100%, that would raise flags. You can’t just swap all “D” votes to “R” because there are exit polls and polls ahead of time, so there is some idea of how the overall vote will go. If candidate polls at 45% before the election ,but gets 60%, then that would be a red flag. It would have to flip about every 20th vote. I’m sure someone could probably figure out how to do it, but it’s not as easy as just flipping every “D” vote to “R”.

          • greenmanTN

            I forget the exact figures, but in one locale, Pennsylvania I think, there was a marked difference in voting tallies in precincts that used paperless voting machines vs those that used paper. As I recall, the figure was only something like 7%, but it was enough to flip the election. You can look at something like that and think “there’s something fishy going on here” but without a paper trail there’s no way to prove it or double check.

            And not to be a paranoid conspiracy theorist, but the companies that make those voting machines and maintain them, like Diebold, are owned by people with ties to the Republican Party, so I want transparency in our elections.

            My only real concern is that our elections accurately portray the votes cast and can be double checked if there is any doubt. Obviously I want progressive candidates to win, but if that doesn’t happen I want to be sure it really was “the will of the people.”

    • ChrisInKansas

      Pure coincidence that Russia favors his side.

  • another_steve

    If you go to a travel agent, LGBT puppies, make sure you go to an LGBT-friendly and up-to-date agent.

    Don’t travel to places that hate you.

    • Todd Allis

      Well, there go my plans for a family vacation to Westboro Baptist Church.

      • another_steve

        “Westboro: Where incest reigns and homo-hate pays the bills.”

  • Rick Jackson

    Well, no more trips to Bermuda for me.

  • Cipher

    I’m not even wearing ‘Bermuda Shorts’ again until this BS is fixed!

    • greenmanTN

      Keep wearing them but call them “Freedom Shorts” maybe?

      • jawnbc

        Liberty trousers!

      • Chris Baker

        Gay Marriage Shorts

  • Ninja0980

    If my husband’s and I marriage is second rate, then our money is too and thus Bermuda doesn’t need it.

  • anne marie in philly

    what a twatwaffle! boycott bermuda!

  • Dave B

    Bermuda,..Enjoy 1st class accommodation as a second class citizen. I think we know how this will end. In a few years after they see tourism plummet they’ll reinstate marriage equality and come begging the gays to return to their shithole island.

  • rextrek1

    well I’ll Never go there and spend my $$$

  • mikeinftl

    Really, this 2018.

  • Rocco

    Added to list of countries that won’t get my second class citizenship dollars.

  • fuzzybits

    We get it,you hate us.

  • ChrisInKansas

    The world is very slowly creeping backwards. This is not good at all.

  • Mrs. Councillor Nugent

    Shorting Bermuda same-sex couples

  • fuzzybits

    Enough with all the depressing news. Try to enjoy the day folks.

  • scream4ever

    This’ll head back to the courts I’m sure.

    • drbrentzenobia

      The issue has already been thru their courts, that’s how they got SSM legalized in the first place. The revocation was something the Bermuda Parliament did because they didn’t like the court decision.

      • scream4ever

        Because the Constitution hasn’t changed, it can go back to the courts.

  • Leo

    Nancy’s still going by the way. Almost six hours I think.

  • zhera

    The list of countries I won’t visit until they get their shit together keeps growing. (Not that I had any plans of going to Bermuda).

  • John

    Well, no trip to Bermuda for me and my husband.

  • The_Wretched

    OT quick reversal on the dow. It was up most of the day and just dropped like a rock in the last hour. It’s all in the ‘noise’ part still but geez.

  • peacfulseas inWA

    Domestic partnerships,civil unions are second class = ” gay marriage ” not Marriage nor Equality.

  • Publius

    This is regrettable, but as long as the UK is in the business of running a Commonwealth with appointed governors-general, then rubber stamping legislative decisions is the way it needs to be. The Governor General did his job.

    • The_Wretched

      Oh dear me yes. It’s good that he darn did it. I’ll go sit down and boy my head. I’m a good boy.

      • Publius

        *rolls eyes* … and we’re back.

        Here we have a politician from England acting as head of state of Bermuda. That’s a fucking ridiculous system. The very least a governor general can do is to yield to local decision-making. It should be considered a shitstorm any time a governor acts contrary to the will of a Commonwealth country, such as in the 1975 constitutional crisis in Australia.

        • The_Wretched

          I agree the system is ridiculous. That said, it’s incumbent on everyone to use the tools available to advance human rights and to fight oppression. Call it ‘radical decency’ if you will.

          • Publius

            That’s a slippery slope. We’ve had revolutions about this very issue of unelected heads of state exercising power excessively. Unelected heads of state should not exceed their role as a rubber stamp — ever.

            As a Spanish person, I would have been pissed if King Juan Carlos refused assent to the same sex marriage bill, much like the King of Belgium refused to give assent to legislation that legalized abortion. Decisions like these might be attempted to be justified as pursuits of human rights — unacceptable, nonetheless. Fuck that.

  • Second class citizens. Again.

  • Chaz Antonelli

    F*ck Bermuda!

  • GanymedeRenard

    Now, there’s a certain triangle there, somewhere… Can we put Bermuda’s politicians in a ship and send them on an exploration quest on a stormy night?

  • Generic Commenter

    “This totally undermines UK effort to advance LGBT rights.”

    Elizabetha Regina II obviously does not agree, because it would have been extremely simple for her to instruct her Governor to withhold Royal Assent.

    Having said that, fuck Bermuda and fuck the Queen! (Briton: “Fuck her? Why, you can’t even approach her!”) LGBT tourism $$$ will fly elsewhere, one hopes.

    • Jay

      The queen’s role is entirely ceremonial. AFAIK the question of whether the governor can veto legislation, or in what circumstances, is a thorny constitutional issue. However, the UK government does ultimately control the overseas territories, and has a duty to protect the human rights of their residents. They should have stepped in somehow, whether that meant pressing the governor not to sign the law, or making constitutional changes.

      • Generic Commenter

        I was not aware it was a “thorny issue” in the least. Do you mean “thorny” whether Gov-Gen has authority to decline Royal Assent?(*) That seems clear.

        It might be “thorny” whether or not to grant Assent in the first place, yes (but that is more of a policy issue than one of constitutional law).

        (*) Assuming Gov-Gen is so directed by the Monarch

      • Generic Commenter

        Summoning, proroguing, dissolving Parliament are not exactly ceremonial.

  • 2guysnamedjoe

    It’s believed hoped that the Bermuda-flagged cruise ships that have been offering at-sea same-sex marriages will now drop that service island.

    • They can’t — that’s where they’re registered.

      • 2guysnamedjoe

        Maybe, maybe not. Most Liberian-registered ships, for instance, have never been in Liberian waters.

  • 2guysnamedjoe

    Whoever it was in the UK that appointed him Bermuda’s governor should immediately reassign him to South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, “a remote and inhospitable collection of islands in the south Atlantic”.

    • drbrentzenobia

      I very much doubt he made this decision on his own. He would have been acting on the instructions of May’s UK government. Their OT governors aren’t independent political actors in the same sense that US governors are.

  • Mike

    I’d say let’s all boycott Bermuda, except I don’t know anyone who has ever gone there or ever would. But boy, if someone suggests we go somewhere for a dull and unimaginative getaway, Bermuda is out!

    • 2guysnamedjoe

      I’ve always thought of Bermuda as a resort for the newly wed and the nearly dead.

      • Generic Commenter

        There are a couple of bridge tournaments held in Bermuda annually that are very popular with bridge-players in the States; they mainly fall into the “nearly dead” classification

  • Tom Ato

    Skim milk? No thanks.

  • Generic Commenter

    What does Mr Johnson have to do with any of this? (See Mr Bryant’s tweet, above.)

  • j.martindale

    As long as Rank’n (how appropriate) and his ilk are in control, this is a shithole country.

    • 2guysnamedjoe

      He’s not really in control. He’s the UK-appointed rubber stamp.

      • j.martindale

        If he has control over the stamp, screw him!

  • andrew

    Hopefully gay people, their friends and relatives will take Bermuda off their list of vacation destinations.

    • MBear

      friends and relatives: doubtfully

  • Jean-Marc in Canada
    • MBear


  • MBear

    And fk you in the ear with a tow truck you fkg fk

  • Henry Auvil

    Will Mike Bloomberg, who famously flies to his Bermuda vacation house each weekend, have anything to say about this?

  • So much for those famous “pink sand” beaches. No bother, though. Bermuda is a stuffy bore of a place. No need to spend any of my money there. Let their tourist industry starve. Fuck ’em. Boycott.

  • Marty Burke

    Add Bermuda to the list including The Bahamas and Jamaica. I won’t be travelling to Bermuda anytime soon.

  • Friday’s_cat

    The same kind of fool who engages in promiscuous unprotected relations sails on Bermuda flagged cruise ships.

  • JohnMyroro

    The UK is as responsible for this travesty as much as Bermuda. It’s their colony, and their governor in place could have denied approval.

  • jawnbc

    The Governor is symbolic head of state. It is almost unheard of for the Crown’s representative to overrule the elected parliamentarians. There are courts to test whether the law is constitutional or not—it’s not the Governor’s role. IWestminster parliamentary democracy (PD) is a particular system and tradition: other PDs give their heads of state some substantive sorts of power. And of course the US has a unitary head of state and government, the POTUS. Lather, rinse, repeat for Canada, NZ, Australia, and a lot of other Commonwealth countries.

  • SDG

    Fuck Bermuda… now let’s stop going…!

  • TheManicMechanic

    This is how a country shitholes itself.

  • tonybrannon

    As a Bermudian, I must apologize to the planet for the sinister actions of the politically and religiously motivated politicians (in both political parties) in overthrowing Marriage Equality in Bermuda.
    British Labour MP Chris Bryan has it right: “I am deeply saddened by this reactionary move. In a hundred years Christians will be as ashamed of this as they are today about slavery.”
    That “some” who fought so hard for their rights (and rightly so) would trample on the rights of others is indeed REPUGNANT.
    To follow all the latest news on the fight for Equality in Bermuda follow

  • No More GOP.

    So, an other place I won’t be spending my tourism dollars.

  • WesternIowan

    An island of 63,000 people violating the human rights of hundreds of millions of people. Best to disband it permanently.

    If you see bigots happy and saying they are booking vacations to Bermuda, simply remind them they are going to a place that ended its democracy by ending Equal Protection under Law – a place where people no longer have any reason to uphold the rule of law so they should bring lots of expensive jewelry, cameras, clothes, etc. and should eat lots of food since there is no reason to maintain health standards there anymore. Remind them it’s isolated in the Atlantic where tourists vanish at night, pulled out to sea where they never wash up on shore anywhere, just sink to the bottom. Wish them the vacation they deserve.

  • DN

    Such a cruel thing to do.

  • JoyZeeBoy

    Kiss my tourist dollars goodbye!