Wednesday, 14 November 2018

Gov't against protection of marriage as bond between man and woman

ČTK |
11 July 2018

Prague, July 10 (CTK) - The government of ANO and the Social Democrats (CSSD) will not support deputies' bill securing constitutional protection of marriage as a bond between man and woman in the Chamber of Deputies, PM Andrej Babis told a press conference after a cabinet meeting on Tuesday.

The cabinet issued a negative stance on the bill that a group of deputies wants to complement the Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms, a part of the Czech constitution.

According to government documents, the cabinet backs another bill, submitted by another group of deputies who want to introduce the status of marriage also for same-sex couples. The bill was recently approved by Babis's previous cabinet.

Commenting on the former bill, the Government Legislative Council wrote that any changes to the Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms must be approached with reserve. The rights and freedoms anchored in the Charter should not be used to block the rights of certain groups of people. In addition, a general declaration in the Charter would not meet the goals pursued by the bill's authors, the Council wrote.

The constitutional bill on the protection of marriage as a bond between man and woman was signed by over 30 deputies from among the Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL), the ANO movement, the Civic Democrats (ODS), the CSSD, TOP 09 and the Mayors and Independents (STAN) led by Marek Vyborny (KDU-CSL).

The bill is to secure the protection of the bond between man and woman as one of the basic elements of a complete family. Its authors highlight the historical anchorage of marriage as a basically permanent bond between one man and one woman mainly in the European civilisation context.

Furthermore, the bill should prevent imprudent legislative or interpretation experiments that could otherwise affect the provisions on marriage as part of common laws.

The present definition of marriage must be protected against the efforts to challenge or modify it, the authors of the bill say.

A few days ago, another group of 46 deputies from ANO, the Pirates, the Communists (KSCM), the CSSD, TOP 09 and STAN proposed that marriage can also be concluded by homosexual couples, who would have the same rights and duties as married heterosexual couples. The institute of registered partnership, which the law offers to homosexuals now, would be abolished.

It is up to the Chamber of Deputies to decide on both bills.

The latter bill, introducing the marriage of same-sex couples, needs a simple majority of votes to be passed, while the former one, securing the protection of the man-woman marriage, is a constitutional bill and needs support from at least three fifths (120) of the Chamber's 200 members to make it through.

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