Skip to main content

Here Is a Video of People Singing as New Zealand's Parliament Legalizes Gay Marriage

Legislators unite for a Maori love song.
  • Author:
  • Updated:

The video embedded below is a C-Span-style transmission of today's (or tomorrow's, with the date line) 77-44 vote of parliament legalizing gay marriage in New Zealand.!

A few weeks ago we reported research showing that American efforts to guarantee marriage rights for same-sex couples differ from successful efforts elsewhere in the world. Most countries that have legalized same-sex marriage have done so via legislative action. American efforts tend to go through the courts. Both systems have their reasons. But the legal route is clearly slower. Today, add New Zealand as another data point on the legislative side.

At about 1:20, the eye-glazing parliamentary procedure is wonderfully shattered by a man singing from the balcony. He's soon joined by everyone else.

The tune, Pokarekare Ana, is a Maori love song often played at weddings. The lyrics are a little mawkish—call it the Maori version of Unchained Melody. Here, though, it really works nicely.