Gay Politician Proposes During Australia's Same-Sex Marriage Debate

News - Deborah Hastings

An Australian member of Parliament proposed to his longtime partner during a debate over same-sex marriage.

The answer was a resounding yes.

Tim Wilson, an openly gay politician, popped the question from the floor of the House of Representatives Monday.

"And with the indulgence of the speaker, the person I have to thank most is my partner, Ryan," Wilson said, his voice catching. "This debate has been the soundtrack of our relationship."

"In my first speech, I defined our bond by the ring that sits on both of our left hands. They are the answer to the questions we cannot ask. So there's only one thing left to do. Ryan Patrick Bolger, Will you marry me?" Wilson asked.

His partner of seven years, sitting in the gallery, smiled broadly and said "yes" as the audience and the floor clapped loudly.

"Should let Hansard note to record that was a yes," said deputy speaker Rob Mitchell, referring to the official record of proceedings.

Later, the body's Twitter account said Wilson is "the first-ever member to propose on the floor of the House."

A bill to legalize gay marriage passed the Senate last week. It is expected to pass the House this week.

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