Senate Votes Against Gay Rights, House Holding Off

Gay Marriage Ban Halted In Puerto Rico

There’s some mixed news out of Puerto Rico this morning. The Island’s Senate voted to approve a constitutional ban on gay marriage, but the House put off its vote until next year:

Jose Aponte, President of the House of Representatives, put the breaks on a constitutional amendment that would ban same-sex marriages in the island as well as civil unions even for straight couples but said that the House would take up the issue in the next legislative session which begins on January 5th of 2008.

It was a small ray of light for LGBT-rights advocates in the island who were dismayed by the degree of support that the [measure] drew in the Puerto Rican senate last night securing its passage. The final tally was twenty senators in favor, two against, one abstention and four other senator absent (the measure needed 18 votes to pass).

At least one approving senator admitted to voting yay in exchange for other legislative passage. Gay activist Pedro Julio Serrano call the Senate’s decision “a disgrace for our history”.