PLP On Same Sex Marriage Referendum Bill

February 29, 2016

“The OBA’s constantly shifting position on same sex marriage is lacking in openness and transparency and has been unfair to the electorate,” the Progressive Labour Party said this evening [Feb 29].

This follows after the announcement earlier today by Premier Michael Dunkley that the Government will table a Referendum Bill so “that the people of this Country can express their opinions on same-sex marriage and civil unions via a Referendum.”

A PLP spokesperson said, “The OBA’s constantly shifting position on same sex marriage is lacking in openness and transparency and has been unfair to the electorate. The continued change of direction and lack of proper consultation highlights the discord amongst the OBA on this issue.

“Earlier this month MP Michael Weeks brought forward legislation that would have given Bermudians the right to voice their opinion on this issue via a referendum. The OBA shot it down.

“Today, the OBA announced that they will indeed support the PLP’s position and give Bermudians a voice on same sex marriage via a referendum.

“Despite this massive reversal by the OBA, it is evident that the Premier, the Attorney General and Minister Gordon-Pamplin are unable to form a consistent position, despite sitting together in Cabinet.

“The OBA must sort out their internal conflict over this issue, focus on the people of Bermuda and go forward with a clear, honest approach that lets Bermudians know where they really want to take this country.”

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  1. Onion says:

    The PLP are even more spineless than the OBA. Hiding behind a referendum rather than taking a stand.

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      Yup, it’s official, after years of the PLP brushing the issue under the carpet, hoping to keep things in the closet, they now open their mouths to confirm their hypocrisy. I’m am disgusted with the OBA’s stance on a referendum for equal rights, but I can appreciate the fact they are in a lose/lose situation having had this dropped on them. But now the PLP ar trying to score points, when their solution is to actually put a discrimination list into the Human Rights Act… the primacy legislation who’s entire purpose is to prevent discrimination from ever being allowed to occur again. They are correct about one thing, this issue creates a lot of conflict in consciences and beliefs between members of both parties, but they all need to let that go and come together to defend and uphold the principles of democracy, irregardless of their personal or religious beliefs; that principle being that all are equal under the law. A failure to stand for this, is a failure as a democratically elected officer in any democracy.

      • Daylilly says:

        Everyone agrees with equal rights for all Bermuduans. The problem becomes when a specific population wants special rights that will shift the social & cultural foundations on which Bermuda was built.

        It is refreshing that the OBA was willing to hear the voice of its electorate instead of listening to the accusations of same sex marriage activists. It is equally refreshing to know that the PLP has maintained an unwavering position all along. Bipartisan agreement is significant because the public institution of marriage involves all of Bermuda.

        • Cow Polly says:

          Special rights? Do tell….

          • Mike Hind says:

            Good luck getting an answer out of “Daylily”.

            Actual engagement is not their strongpoint.

            For example, they chucked out this “special rights” thing, but won’t back it up with anything substantive (because there isn’t anything there) and will just come back with the usual already-debunked falsehoods and fabrications, ignoring every argument against their lies.

            • Mike Hind says:


              • LOL (Original TM*) says:

                not sure but one possible out come is suing someone for not renting to them. Not saying that this will happen but it could be an unintended consequence. I agree this is just speculation. Another one could be contesting a will if it did not go their way. Again just speculation…


          • Stickbone says:

            Yes, tell us about these special rights, that are so different and so much better from what hetrosexuals enjoy…

          • Nightlilly says:

            You know…the “special rights” of being treated like a human being

        • Susan says:

          Special rights?!?! They want what you want.To love who they want and marry who they want.

        • Just the Tip says:

          Oh look the liar is back on

        • Build a Better Bermuda says:

          Don’t try and mince words, your excited by the prospect of having the Human Rights Act violated so you can justify you own narrow views for the maintenance of discrimination in our laws. It is even more disturbing that you find it refreshing and happily agree that the PLP should actually put a list for the purpose of discrimination in the law meant to prevent discrimination from ever happening again…
          I am also wondering what ‘special’ rights you refer to, the only rights the LGBT community are seeking the exact same right everyone else enjoys under the law. Also, in every country that has embraced same sex marriage, there has been no real shift in their social or cultural foundations, nor has there been moral erosion or the destruction of family values, and children have as much chance of growing up happy and normal as they do in different sex marriages.

    • Bravo says:

      Please explain how one becomes “even more spineless” than another LOL I thought they’d just both be spineless. But greater minds than I (you) suggest one can be “more” spineless than another Lolll I’m dying laughin. Eeeeegrance

    • Both Party’s are Full of S !@#!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. stand for something says:

    Please PLP it seems you are all the same. Hypocrites!

  3. Rich says:

    First – I agree that the OBA’s position is unsatisfactory.

    But second – sort out their ‘internal conflict’? Pot calling the kettle black anyone?

    • High road says:

      Very much so. They think that with all of these issues reaching a boiling point that we forget that their affairs are in a mess? Not this person

  4. Frank says:

    PLP get what they wanted and they still complain?

  5. Lois Frederick says:

    What is the plp’s “consistent position” on SSM? And holding a Referendum so the people can decide is not the answer. The only opinions I have heard, along the way from plp MPs, have been consistently homophobic slurs. Nice.

  6. Noncents says:


    The OBA dropped the ball on this one but the PLP don’t have a leg to stand on. They position themselves as the party of the people yet continuously show that they only care about a certain segment of the people.

    The “progressive” labour party have proven time and time again to be stuck in the stone age. I am furious with the OBA but have zero time for listen to criticism from these divisive fools.

    • Unbelievable says:

      I’m annoyed at the OBA too but yes, the PLP have no leg to stand on.

  7. Enough says:

    These clowns will complain about anything!

  8. Keepin' it Real!...4Real! says:

    Hahahaha!!! I’ve been waiting for the hyenas too weasel their way in…oh pahleeeeeeze…everyone in Nepal can see that they waited to hear the peoples reaction before opening their mouth and polluting the atmosphere two fold…This s#!t is getting tiresome…Bermuda has been circling the drain for a while now…I’m getting dizzy…GET OUT OF THE WAY OBA! and let us sufferers be put out of our suffering!

  9. Unbelievable says:

    The PLP are such charlatans. They are behaving just like the Republicans in America. The OBA inherited all the mess the PLP created and now they are acting like it has nothing to do with them. Just the Republicans when they attack Obama.

    • Keeping pace says:

      People why are so many of you bashing the PLP. They are not the current government and they do not have sufficient votes to out vote the OBA in parliament. And not every current situation we find ourselves in was caused by the PLP. We all have to take responsibility for the state of our country. That’s right everyone of us. You may have voted OBA/UBP or PLP, or not voted at all, but each Bermudian went to or had an opportunity to go to the polls each election and vote; so those pesons who have sat in the House of Parliament our our choices. So when they made bad choice they were our bad choices. Not one Bermudian’s hands are clean. The PLP have not been silent Minister Weeks table a bill seeking a referendum. If you feel you do not know the position of the PLP call them up and ask. They do not have to be calling up the press and hold discussions in the media. You want to know where they stand call the elected PLP MPs and ask. Stop scandalizing them with your negative comments. You are just trying to sway public opinion against them and most sensible people see right through you.

    • You mean the KKK Republican Party.

  10. ImJustSayin says:

    This is just a cop out by Michael Dunkley and his OBA government. They know full well that the Churches have a big influence on the voter’s in this country so they know it will be a unanimous NO. This government doesn’t have the you know what they play Tennis and Football with to make the decision for themselves.

  11. Peace says:

    A referendum should not be used as a tool of oppression. I am disappointed in both parties. This is sickening.

  12. Peace says:

    Don’t play politics with people’s lives!

  13. Truth hurts says:

    Yet another example of when the PLP should just not have said anything…

  14. Triangle Drifter says:

    As expected, nothing from the PLP.

    The whole lot of you, both sides, are a waste. Thats the bad news.

    The good news is that for once most of the supporters of both partys seem to agree. Now that is a first.

  15. Longtailtoo says:

    I don’t think the outcome of the referendum’s a foregone conclusion by any means … not all voters are church-goers, and not all church-goers are prejudiced against gays and lesbians. Look what happened in Ireland, where the church historically had even more influence than it does here!

  16. Daylilly says:

    It seems that both the PLP & the OBA recognize that the entire world didn’t define marriage based on some homophobic vendetta. Marriage is defined as the Union of a man and a woman because that’s what marriage is. That’s not religion or politics, it’s a biological, physiological, psychological, anthropological, & sociological truth.

    • Mike Hind says:

      Another nonsense ad populum argument from “Daylily”, exposing their continued agenda of misinformation.

      Nothing in here is true. As usual.

      • Keeping pace says:

        Mike why do you call Daylilly’s last comment nonsense? Her statement is correct there is a purpose for marriage being only between a man and a woman and that is to make babies and build families. And she is also right that that purpose existed before politics, religion or the ECHR. We need to really take a hard look at ourselves. Many of the comments posted over the past 12 hours are all based on pure emotion. When SSM supporter felt they had the government in their pocket their comments were full of arrogance now with today’s announcement you are bashing the very OBA members you thought would walk your agenda through to a yes vote. Well it is not going to be that easy. Both side are quoting the ECHR laws to fit their cause and slinging mud at each other when the pendulum of public opinion looks like it is swing against your position. This will be decided by the people of Bermuda and it is the right thing to do. It’s about everyone’s rights and everyone has a right to be heard.

        • Nightlilly says:

          Oh Keeping pace, my sweet Summer child.

          If making babies was the “purpose” of marriage then the infertile and the unwilling would be banned from entering into marriage.

          If marriage was purely religious then one would not have to pay a fee to the government to have their marriage recognised.

          If popping out groin fruit is the only way to build a family then adoptions wouldn’t be a thing.

          • Keeping pace says:

            Mike, it your opinion that I do not have an understanding of this situation. What I will say is that some of us who are for PM have loved one who are in SS relationships and love them with all our hearts. That love is unconditional but loving someone unconditional does not mean that we have to endorse their choices. One has nothing to do with the other. So when you says that I do not understand this situation you are seriously wrong. The fact that I choose to stand by what I believe is not opinion but my belief. I respect your view of marriage even if it does not agree with Mine but unlike you, I will stop short of call yours or anyone else’s views as incorrect. I can respect when you present your OPINION on this situation.

          • Keeping pace says:

            What’s sad is that such a weak argument would be presented. I never said anything about marriage being tied to religion. I simply stated that it existed before religion. Why is it that so many SSM supporters are quick to attack religion. Religious people are not the only people wanting to preserve marriage.

            And by the way, you do have to pay a fee to get married in Bermuda so that is a mute point.

        • Mike Hind says:

          “Her” statement is absolutely NOT correct. Absolutely not.

          Procreation is not a requirement for marriage.
          “Making babies” is not a neccesity for marriage.

          SSM supporters have never felt that they had the Government in their pocket.
          The rest of your post is opinion presented as fact and is pretty much all wrong… or at least showing a breathtaking lack of understanding of the situation.

          • Keeping pace says:

            Mike, it your opinion that I do not have an understanding of this situation. What I will say is that some of us who are for PM have loved one who are in SS relationships and love them with all our hearts. That love is unconditional but loving someone unconditional does not mean that we have to endorse their choices. One has nothing to do with the other. So when you says that I do not understand this situation you are seriously wrong. The fact that I choose to stand by what I believe is not opinion but my belief. I respect your view of marriage even if it does not agree with Mine but unlike you, I will stop short of call yours or anyone else’s views as incorrect. I can respect when you present your OPINION on this situation.

            • Mike Hind says:


              First off, I’m not sure you understand what the word “unconditional” means.

              then you say “I respect your view of marriage even if it does not agree with Mine but unlike you, I will stop short of call yours or anyone else’s views as incorrect. I can respect when you present your OPINION on this situation.”

              Here’s the thing… I keep saying this over and over… and this sort of thing is why it’s pretty clear that you don’t understand the situation…

              I haven’t said that anyone’s views are incorrect. I, in fact, keep saying, again and again, that people are welcome to their views and have, repeatedly, offered support for people being allowed to air their views.

              Where the problem lies is when people think that their views should have an effect on someone else’s life.

              You can believe in traditional marriage all you want. I got your back on that.
              Believe away.

              However, demanding that “traditional marriage” be the ONLY kind of marriage?
              That’s where we got a problem. Your religious views are personal. They are yours and shouldn’t have a negative impact on someone else’s life.
              Using misinformation, as “Daylily” does… as well as outright lying about things…, to promote your religious views and force them onto everyone else is just plain wrong. It’s unfair. It’s unjust.

              If this were being done to you, if someone else’s religious views were being used as the reason to deny you equal access to rights, wouldn’t that be unjust and unfair and wrong?

              Why is it different?

            • Mike Hind says:

              Oh, and when I say: “Procreation is not a requirement for marriage.
              “Making babies” is not a neccesity for marriage.”

              That’s not an opinion. That is a fact.

    • Peace says:

      I suppose you are a doctor of biopsychology who’s particular area of study is same-sex relationships among various primates.

    • serengeti says:

      It’s you lot that want special rights. You want everyone to be subjugated to your personal myth beliefs. You’re the equivalent of people that victimize others for not following sharia law.
      If we followed the bible we would have slavery, execution by stoning to death, genital mutilation, and burning of witches.
      Take your stupid old ridiculous myths and shove them. The rest of us are in the 21st century, not the stone age.

    • Nightlilly says:

      How many times do we have to restate that not every culture defines marriage the same way as you. That is a lie.


      Polygyny is widely practiced around the world. That would be the practice of marriage between a man and a woman and a woman and a woman (and a woman and a woman and a woman…)

      Polyandry is less practiced but still exists in some cultures. That would be the practice of marriage between a woman and a man and a man and a man (and a man and a man and a man…)

      Homosexual marriage has been practiced throughout human history.


      Homosexuality exists in nature. Naturally. Across many species. It has nothing to do with “morality” homosexuality is actually a very useful biological imperative. Those creatures who are unable to naturally produce offspring are able to “adopt” offspring that has been abandoned or the parents have died and raise it to adulthood ensuring the continuation of the species. Some males of some species have the biological imperative to make as many offspring as possible so they will not stick around to help raise the young – being in a homosexual pairing means that there are twice as many adults to protect and raise the young to adulthood – ensuring the continuation of the species.

      Homosexual animals species include: Bison, Brown bears, Brown rats, Cavy, Caribou, Domestic Cats, Domestic Cattle, Chimpanzees, Common dolphins, Common marmoset, Dogs, Elephants, Foxes, Giraffes, Goats, Domestic Horses, Human, Koalas, Lions, Orcas, Raccoons, Barn owls, Chickens, Common gulls, Emu, House sparrow, Kestrels, King penguins, Mallards, Ostriches, Ravens, Rock doves, Seagulls, Amazon molly, Blackstripe topminnow, Bluegill sunfish, Char, Grayling, European bitterling, Green swordtail, Guiana leaf fish, Houting whitefish, Jewel fish, Least darter (Microperca punctulata), Salmon, Southern platyfish, Ten-spined stickleback, Three-spined stickleback, Anoles, Bearded dragons, Blue-tailed day gecko (Phelsuma cepediana), Broad-headed skinks, Checkered whiptail lizards, Chihuahuan spotted whiptail lizards, Common amebas, Common garter snake, Cuban green anole, Desert grassland whiptail lizard, Desert tortoise, Fence lizard, Five-lined skink, Gold dust day gecko (Phelsuma laticauda), Gopher (pine) snake, Green anole, Inagua curlytail lizard, Jamaican giant anole, Laredo striped whiptail lizard, Largehead anole, Mourning gecko, Plateau striped whiptail lizard, Red diamond rattlesnake, Red-tailed skink, Side-blotched lizard, Speckled rattlesnake, Water moccasin, Western rattlesnake (Crotalus viridian), Western banded gecko, Whiptail lizards, Wood turtles, Appalachian woodland salamander, Black-spotted frog, Mountain dusky salamander, Tengger desert toad, Alfalfa weevils, Australian parasitic wasps, Bean weevils, Bedbug and other bugs, Blister beetles, Blowflies, Broadwinged damselflies, Cabbage (small) white (butterfly), Checkerspot butterflies, Club-tailed dragonflies, Cockroaches, Common skimmer dragonflies, Creeping water bugs, Cutworms, Digger bees, Dragonflies, Eastern giant ichneumon wasps, Eucalyptus long horned borders, Field crickets, Flour beetles, Fruit flies, Glasswing butterflies, Hypoponera opacior ants, Grape berry moths, Grape borers, Green lacewings, Hen fleas, House flies, Ichneumon wasps, Japanese scarab beetles, Larch bud moths, Large milkweed bugs, Long-legged flies, Mazarine blues, Mexican white (butterfly), Migratory locusts, Monarch butterflies, Narrow-winged damselfly, Parsnip leaf miner, Pomace fly, Queen butterfly, Red ant, Red flour beetle, Reindeer warble fly (Hypoderma tarandi), Rose chafer, Rove beetles, Scarab beetle (melolonthine), Screwworm fly, Silkworm moth, Southeastern blueberry bee, Southern green stink bug, Southern masked chafer, Southern one-year cane grub, Spreadwinged damselfly, Spruce budworm moth, Stable fly, Stag beetle, Tsetse fly, Water boatman bug, Water strider, Blood-fluke, Box crabs, Harvest spiders, Hawaiian orb-weaver (spider), Incirrate octopus, Jumping spiders, Mites, and Spiny-headed worms.


      Homosexual orientation is not defined as a disorder. It is not psychologically harmful. What is harmful is bigots telling homosexuals they are not equal and that they should be ashamed. It takes a toll on the psyche.


      If the only reason to get married is to have babies then the infertile and the unwilling should be banned from marriage.


      Homosexuals have always existed. They have been tolerated to varying degrees in varying ways in different cultures across the world. In some cultures homosexual love was seen as the pinnacle of romantic love and heterosexual love was dirty and wrong and heterosexual love should only be for procreation (I’m looking at you ancient Greece).

      Society is not made weaker by having consenting adults professing their public love for one another and then receiving all the legal benefits that go along with a government sanctioned marriage (because if marriage was purely religious then I wouldn’t have to pay the government $354 to file some paperwork).

      Society is made stronger when we are tolerant of others and when we give everyone equal rights.

      • LOL says:

        are you insane? anyone who posts such idiocy and believes it can only be insane.

        • Mike Hind says:

          Anyone that believes YOU can only be insane.

      • LOL (Original TM*) says:

        Please site your research. I have raised many dogs and it has always been said that the quote unquote domination of another dog is for establishing dominance infact it is also a training method for dogs for a person to stand over the dog in a startle position. So gay animals I do not believe that is accurate and may be an interpretation of someone who want it to mean what they want. Again please provide where your research comes from.

        LOL not saying you have not researched it but I would like to see it myself that there is actual irrefutable proof of this.

        • Mike Hind says:

          Why is irrefutable proof required now, but not when people on your side make bizarre and completely false claims?

          • LOL (Original TM*) says:

            it was just a question I would like to research it myself that is all are you now suggesting none exists? and do not confuse me with general statements of what others say as Im on my side not theirs or others as you try to attack me

    • rich says:

      This is nonsense. Marriage as we see it now is a thoroughly modern institution. Previously it was a patriarchal and transactional institution regarding property and social welfare arrangements. In Europe, marriage was largely a noble pursuit. Lower class individuals hardly ever married.

      Other societies allow for forced marriage, polygamy, payments to fathers of bride, etc. Some enlightened societies (including certain tribal ones in Africa, Australasia and North America) didn’t even have the institution of marriage at all.

      All of this is to say stop making broad generalizations about a socially created and evolved institution.

  17. Zevon says:

    So the PLP are a weak-ass bunch of hypocrites. Nothin new there.

  18. Coffee says:

    Good on you PLP ! Most of the rainbow people wear pink shorts on Front Street , but give them a chance and they’ll march down Court Street waving that flag !

    We all know that the UBP/BDA/OBA is spineless and if the referendum fails to allow that rainbow flag to flutter in victory , then Micheal Dunkeley will put all the blame on the PLP!

  19. edwin says:

    The straw that broke the camel’s back, all the disgruntled OBA supporters are speaking out against them, all before they have been sucking it up and saying nothing.

  20. Zario says:

    If they had a referendum on slavery, we would still have slavery. That’s why I am against referendums. Do what’s right OBA.

    • Just saying says:

      Slavery and same sex marriage are not even the same thing. The issues are night and day.

  21. Takbir Karriem Sharrieff says:

    Same sex supporters ,crying foul,stamping their feet,and sucking their teeth. They know that Democracy is being served,yes the Majority rules.Yes the churches,and all religious people are offended by same sex marriage.Yes we will say no to that Deviation in a referendum.Yes they will have to go back in the closet where they belong.No sympathy from me for that Behaviour in Public.Bring on The referendum.Peace.

    • Hmmm says:

      LOL…. and interracial marriage in the state of Virginia had less than 20% approval rate, the state government knew it would never be approved at the poll so they pushed it through themselves.

      How does this fit with your “Democracy is being served, yes the Majority rules”?

  22. Wall Day says:

    This news is most disappointing as now I will have to move to thailand to be with my lover.

  23. Bravo says:

    The OBA must sort out their internal conflict. Hahahahahhahaaaha

  24. Coffee says:

    Well done PLP !! True democracy at play . By allowing the people who actually must live with this decision to vote on it shows great strenght and morality for Bermuda and its most wonderful people !

  25. Will says:

    Might as well kill two birds with one stone and throw in a question on legalisation of cannabis.

  26. aceboy says:

    Can someone please tell me what the PLP’s position has been? On SSM please, not a referendum.

    We recently had two couples in our vacation rental units. One was a lesbian couple, the other two gay men. I guess I can *kiss* that business away once the Churches are done harassing their congregations to vote no.

  27. Casey says:

    I strongly support same sex marriage, and I’m disappointed with Government’s decision to hold a non-binding referendum. But it’s important to understand why they may be doing it. First, this is clearly an emotive issue that won’t be addressed entirely through logic or appeals to human rights conventions. And those differences of opinion exist within Cabinet and Parliament. I understand, for example, that Walton Brown is the only PLP MP willing to vote yes on civil union legislation (shameful!). And we know that OBA MP Richards supports a referendum. The point here, people, is votes, and in this legislature, every vote counts. If the OBA knows–after counting up the votes, which they surely have done–they can’t get even civil union legislation through Parliament, why should they risk a no vote? How does that progress the goal of SSM? Remember how long it took for the Stubbs bill to pass? Remember that Renee Webb couldn’t get her bill through Parliament? The referendum is non-binding, to be used as a guide to community opinion. So it will be critical for all of us who support SSM as the ultimate goal to work hard to get out the vote, lobby your MPs, and participate in a crucial public education campaign.

  28. clearasmud says:

    I think it is time that there was an official clarification from Government House as to what exactly is our Legal obligation on this matter. We have had both sides claiming that our legal obligation is to support their views so given that our obligations are extended to us by the UK its time to make them clear! This needs to be done long before any referendum or other action is taken!

  29. mike says:

    The PLP can kiss my ***. Their leadership have nothing for the LGBT constituents that have voted for them time and time again.