Kiwis are very enlightened. New Zealand was the first country to allow votes for women.
From today's Melbourne Age:
The New Zealand Parliament voted to legalise same-sex marriage on Wednesday night, a move Australian campaigners said would encourage gay and lesbian couples to travel overseas to formalise their relationships.
The national director of Australian Marriage Equality, Rodney Croome, said as many as 1000 couples had indicated to his organisation they were prepared to travel to New Zealand to marry.
''Most Australian same-sex partners would prefer to marry the person they love in the country they love but, now that marriage equality is only three hours away, there will be a flood of couples flying to New Zealand to tie the knot and spend their money,'' Mr Croome said.
Votes taken before Wednesday night's final poll showed strong support for the bill. Its passing makes New Zealand the 13th country to legalise marriage for gay, lesbian, transgender, bisexual and intersex couples.
The bill is particularly meaningful for transgender people who had been forced to divorce when they changed their gender. Under the changes, they will no longer have to do so.
Australian couples will be free to marry in New Zealand because marriage laws have no residency requirement.
However, Australian law does not recognise same-sex marriages entered into overseas.
Federal Parliament last year narrowly voted down a private member's bill sponsored by Labor MP Stephen Jones, which would have legalised same-sex marriage.
Labor MPs were allowed a conscience vote on the bill but Coalition MPs had to vote according to the party position, which was to oppose same-sex marriage.
Earlier this year Liberal MP Kelly O'Dwyer suggested the Coalition had not yet decided on the same-sex marriage policy it would take to the election.
Greens senator Sarah Hanson-Young said the New Zealand change was ''a great step forward''.
''It's time for the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition to stop holding up marriage equality here in Australia,'' Senator Hanson-Young said.
NATIONS WHERE SAME-SEX MARRIAGE IS LEGAL:
Argentina, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Iceland, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Uruguay.
SAME-SEX MARRIAGE LEGISLATION PENDING:
Same-sex marriage is allowed in nine US states, Washington DC, and parts of Brazil and Mexico.