Slovenia says No to Gay Marriage
More than 60 percent of those who voted were against same-sex marriage.
12/20/15, 10:08 PM CET
Updated 12/20/15, 10:10 PM CET
Slovenians on Sunday voted against legalizing gay marriage, with more than 60 percent of those who cast their vote in a referendum saying No.
According to Slovenian news agency STA, with 90 percent of the votes counted, 63 percent had voted against and 37 percent were in favor. They were voting on whether the country should approve legislation — already passed in parliament — that would have given gay couples the right to marry and adopt.
Turnout was 35.6 percent, STA reported, well above the threshold of 20 percent of registered voters needed to make the referendum result valid.
In March, Slovenia’s parliament approved legislation defining marriage as a “union of two” instead of a “union of a man and a woman.”
The updated legislation will now be dropped and revert back to the old rules, which allow for civil partnerships but not the adoption of children.
The public ballot was called after a conservative group called Children Are At Stake gathered the 40,000 signatures needed to call a referendum. The group argued that the marriage equality law does not recognize the importance of motherhood and fatherhood for the development of a child.
Last week EU politicians, including European commissioner Violeta Bulc, urged Slovenia to vote Yes. Slovenian President Borut Pahor and Prime Minister Miro Cerar’s ruling Modern Center Party also supported a Yes vote.
If the Yes camp had won, Slovenia would have been the first Central European, Slavic and post-Communist nation to do so. More than 10 Western European countries have implemented same-sex marriage laws.