Germany's lower chamber of Parliament, the Bundstag, approved a measure by a vote of 393 to 226 to legalize same-sex marriage.
The vote came suddenly after Chancellor Angela Merkel softened her stance on the issue to allow a legislator's to "vote their conscience" on this last day of the country's legislative session.
Merkel herself voted against the measure, saying after the vote, "For me and the basic law, it’s about the marriage of a woman and a man. That’s why I voted against it. I hope that the vote today shows not only the mutual respect for different opinions but that this also leads to more peace and social cohesion as well.”
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