April 23, 2013 | by Michael K. Lavers
French marriage, adoption bill expected to receive final approval
France, same-sex marriage, gay marriage, marriage equality, gay news, Washington Blade

More than 100,000 people marched through the streets of Paris on Jan. 29 in support of the marriage bill. (Photo by Guillaume Bonnet/All Out)

A bill that would extend marriage and adoption rights to gay and lesbian couples in France is expected to receive final approval on Tuesday in the country’s National Assembly.

Guillaume Bonnet of All Out and other same-sex marriage advocates have become increasingly concerned with rhetoric against the bill they contend has sparked a spate of anti-gay violence across France – three men reportedly beat cabaret singer Raphaël Leclerc unconscious early Saturday morning as he and his partner left a Nice nightclub.

National Assembly President Claude Bartolone on Monday received a letter that contained gunpowder.

Frigide Barjot, a comedian who leads the movement against the same-sex marriage and adoption bill known as Le Manif Pour Tous, has repeatedly tried to distance herself from the anti-gay violence the measure’s supporters maintain her rhetoric insights.

“At the end of the day she has to take responsibility for her speech,” Bonnet told the Washington Blade from Paris on Monday.

The vote in the National Assembly, which approved the measure in February, will take place less than two weeks after it passed in the French Senate.

The bill’s opponents can prompt a constitutional review of the measure if their effort receives the support of 60 members of the Senate or the National Assembly. President François Hollande, who publicly backed the extension of marriage and adoption rights to same-sex couples during his 2012 presidential campaign, has already said lawmakers and not the constitution should decide issue.

The country’s first same-sex weddings are expected to take place in Montpellier in mid-June if the bill becomes law.

Michael K. Lavers has been a staff writer for the Washington Blade since May 2012. The passage of Maryland's same-sex marriage law, the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the burgeoning LGBT rights movement in Latin America and the consecration of gay New Hampshire Bishop V. Gene Robinson are among the many stories he has covered since his career began in 2002. Follow Michael

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