Wednesday Uruguayan lawmakers voted overwhelmingly to expand marriage equality to same sex couples, making the small South American republic the third nation—along with Argentina and Canada—in the western hemisphere to extend the right to marriage to same-sex couples through the legislative process.
From the AP:
Supporters of the law, who had filled the public seats in the legislative building, erupted in celebration Wednesday when the results were announced. The bill received the backing of 71 of the 92 members of the Chamber of Deputies present.
"We are living a historic moment," said Federico Grana, a leader of the Black Sheep Collective, a gay rights group that drafted the proposal. "In terms of the steps needed, we calculate that the first gay couples should be getting married 90 days after the promulgation of the law, or in the middle of July."
President Jose Mujica, whose governing Broad Front majority backed the law, is expected to put it into effect within 10 days.
Once President Mujica signs the marriage equality bill into law Uruguay will become the 12th county in the world with full marriage equality for all of its citizens.