NI Assembly rejects motion to redefine marriage

A motion to support redefining marriage has today been defeated in the Northern Ireland Assembly.

Speaking in the debate, one minister said he was opposed to same-sex marriage and thought that was the “general view in this society in Northern Ireland”.

Ahead of the debate today the Presbyterian Church in Ireland wrote to MLAs urging them not to support the motion.

No demand

The letter warned that redefining marriage would “demolish a fundamental building block of society”.

Speaking in the debate Sammy Wilson, the Northern Ireland Finance Minister, said there were many other issues the Assembly should be debating, such as the economy.

He also commented that there was “no widespread demand across society for the kind of changes which are being asked for in this motion”.


He said: “I am opposed to gay marriage, I would have no intention of bringing forward any legislation to this House to facilitate gay marriage and I believe that in doing that I do reflect what is the general view in this society in Northern Ireland.”

In Westminster and Edinburgh, Governments are attempting to redefine marriage – despite much opposition.

The motion was defeated by 50 votes to 45. The motion could have been blocked by the unionists in Stormont using a ‘cross community’ lock, but in the end the vote was won by a clear majority.