An Aussie Politician Just Proposed To His Partner In The Middle Of A Same-Sex Marriage Debate

“There’s only one thing left to do. Ryan Patrick Bolger, will you marry me?”

Australia is nearing marriage equality, and politician Tim Wilson and his now-fiancé can't wait. After more than 20 failed attempts, a marriage equality bill finally passed one of the Federal Parliament's two houses last week, per The Guardian, when the Senate voted in favor of the bill 43 votes to 12. Now it's up to the lower house, including Wilson, who proposed to his partner during a speech on the Parliament floor today, December 4.



Wilson, a Liberal MP, described why the same-sex marriage issue is such a personal one for him — while his longtime boyfriend, Ryan Bolger, sat in the gallery. 

"The person I have to thank the most is my partner, Ryan," he said. "You have had to tolerate more than most because you have had to put up with me. Trust me! This debate has been the soundtrack to our relationship."

Wilson previously explained that he and Bolger have been wearing rings for some time now to signify their commitment to one another.

"In my first speech I defined our bond by the ring that sits on both of our left hands," he said. "And that they are the answer to the question we cannot ask. So there's only one thing left to do. Ryan Patrick Bolger, will you marry me?"

The video feed from the Parliament floor then cut from Wilson to Bolger, who beamed down at his partner and mouthed the word "Yes."

Wilson then joked that they would "chuck that" in their memoirs and the Hansard, the record of Parliamentary proceedings, but Deputy Speaker Rob Mitchell had a different idea.

"I should Hansard note or record that that was a yes," Mitchell countered. "Congratulations … Well done, mate."

Wilson also told his colleagues that some people "simply didn't know how to react" to his and Bolger's plans to marry.

"Many SMS went unresponded," he recalled. "In conversations, some people politely changed the topic or fell silent entirely. For a while, Ryan kept pushing for an engagement party. In truth, I kept delaying it, perhaps wrongly, because the strong message I took from so many people's silence was that no one would come. Informing one person of our news, they responded 'Why bother?' "

"At the time I fell silent," Wilson admitted. "And I've never had an answer to that question. But the Australian people have now answered it for me."

Indeed, in November, the Australian Bureau of Statistics announced 61 percent of Australians had voted in favor of same-sex marriage, as CNN reported at the time.

Afterward, Australian senator Dean Smith, another gay man, teared up while introducing the marriage equality bill. "I never believed the day would come when my relationship would be judged by my country to be as meaningful and as valued as any other," he said.

The Parliament is expected to legalize same-sex marriage this month, BuzzFeed reports.

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