A clear yes to same-sex marriages

Tue, 28. Sep. 2021
Yes to same-sex marriages in Switzerland (Photograph: Trey Musk)

Last weekend, votes on two national and one cantonal issues took place. Same-sex marriage was clearly accepted, the so-called 99 per cent initiative was clearly rejected. The climate protection article will be implemented in the canton of Bern.

Last Sunday, the Swiss electorate voted in favour of same-sex marriage with 64.1 per cent. This means that same-sex couples will probably be able to marry or convert their registered partnerships into marriages from July 2022. Voter turnout was very high at 52.6 per cent, with not a single canton rejecting it.

In a European comparison, Switzerland is the only country apart from the Vatican and Italy that has not yet allowed same-sex marriage. By adopting the bill, Switzerland is taking a step that supporters say was long overdue. The bill also provides access to sperm donation for lesbian couples. Because access to sperm donation for lesbian couples is only possible in about 50 per cent of European countries, the new law represents a socio-political milestone. With this vote, Switzerland will move from the rear end in Europe to becoming one of the most progressive countries in Europe.

99 per cent initiative has no chance
The initiative on capital taxation did not stand a chance in the vote. The initiative proposed that capital gains such as interest and dividends be taxed more heavily above a certain level. However, the initiative did not find a majority. All cantons and 64.9 per cent of the population clearly rejected the Juso initiative.

Climate protection to be entered in the cantonal constitution
The cantonal bill was about the so-called climate protection article. The aim of the bill is to make the canton of Bern climate-neutral by 2050. To achieve this, an amendment to the constitution by means of a new article is necessary. The bill was accepted by the cantonal population. The urban population tipped the scales in this regard. Biel accepted the proposal with 77.1 per cent and Bern with 84.2 per cent. The majority of the rural population, especially in the Kandetal, Gadmental, but also in the Eriz/Sigriswil area and Simmental, rejected the bill. The exception was Zweisimmen, which accepted the proposal with a 50.4 per cent yes vote. Saanen narrowly rejected the constitutional amendment with 50.3 per cent rejecting it.

Based on AvS/Blanca Burri

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