Romania does not recognise same-sex unions, either in the form of same-sex marriage or civil unions.
Romanian President Traian Băsescu said during his electoral campaign of late 2004 that he sees nothing wrong with same sex marriage. The opposition Social Democratic Party later used his comments against him during the presidential campaign.
The primary LGBT rights in Romania, ACCEPT, has advocated for partnership rights for same sex couples as well as for same-sex marriage in Romania. The organisation launched a campaign to legalise same-sex unions in Romania during the Bucharest GayFest 2006, which lasted from 30 May to 4 June, and was organised under the theme of "Same-sex marriage and civil unions in Romania". This event provoked widespread debate over the issue in the media. LGBT activists from ACCEPT organised a public debate and seminar on same-sex unions on May 31, and called on the government to provide marriage or at least registered partnership for same-sex couples, offering its assistance in forming a legislative proposal. So far, the government has not responded.
Romaniţa Iordache, the president of ACCEPT, stated on May 31 that "Article 200 [the last anti-gay law] has been abrogated, but we [the LGBT community] still do not have equal rights, even though the Constitution guarantees this." The spokesman of ACCEPT, Florin Buhuceanu, claimed that, "Guaranteeing the equality of rights through the recognition of gay marriage... is just a step forward."
Romania's first religious same-sex marriage ceremony took place on 5 June 2006, following the Bucharest GayFest, when Florin Buhuceanu, the executive director of ACCEPT, married his Spanish partner of four years. The symbolic marriage, which has no legal status in Romania, was blessed by the Metropolitan Community Church in Bucharest, an international denomination which recognises same-sex unions and supports LGBT rights. The couple married officially later in 2006, in a civil marriage in Spain, where same-sex marriage is legal.
On 23 February 2008, Peter Eckstein Kovacs, a parliamentarian from the Democratic Union of Hungarians in Romania, proposed the legalisation of registered partnerships which would allow unmarried same-sex and opposite-sex couples a number of rights. He said that the current Family Code was "adopted more than fifty years ago and no longer reflects social realities, both in the case of homosexuals and heterosexuals". This marks the first time that a Romanian politician has explicitly supported civil partnerships for same-sex couples.
Same-sex marriage ban
On 13 February 2008, the Senate of Romania voted an amendment to the Family Code, proposed by Greater Romania Party, to explicitly define marriage as being only between a man and a woman. Previously, the law had only used the words "between spouses". The amendment was approved with 38 votes for, 10 votes against and 19 senators abstaining.
It has not yet been voted in the Chamber of Deputies.
Political party viewpoints
None of Romania's major political parties, either in government or in opposition, explicitly supports same-sex marriage, or has proposed any law regarding it, resulting in the debate about this issue in the political sphere being more reserved than in civil society and the media.
On June 6, 2006, the Cotidianul newspaper conducted interviews with representatives of the five main political parties, asking them about their stance on same-sex marriage.
Crin Antonescu, the leader of the parliamentary delegation of the National Liberal Party, part of the governing alliance, declined to give an official party view on the matter. Instead, he said that, "Both the party and myself have given proof that we are in favour of recognising sexual minorities. However, personally I am against marriage between people of the same sex."
The leader of the Democratic Party, the other large governing coalition member, was similarly elusive, stating that: "Now is not the right moment to talk about this issue [same-sex marriage]. We now have other much more important things to do regarding European integration. Let's integrate firstly, and then we can see the way in which mentalities change. Eventually, we will discuss this issue then." Romania's EU accession took place in January 2007.
Liviu Negoiţă, the Democrat mayor of Bucharest's Sector 3, stated that, "if a law will exist [legalising same-sex marriage], I will respect it. As a mayor, I don't have any other choice. Personally, I respect the sexual choice of each person."
The largest opposition party, the Social Democrats, whose stance on social issues is usually more conservative than that of the governing parties, stated that they would "not initiate and would not support such a legislative proposal". However, the party's official spokesperson also proclaimed that, "A public debate [on same-sex marriage] is necessary, in order to see in what way the standards regarding fundamental liberties can be improved in regard to people with another sexual orientation."
Opposition was seen most clearly from the far-right, nationalist Greater Romania Party. The vice-president of the party stated that, "Clearly, we wouldn't initiate such a legislative proposal, since we're a Christian party. The sin of sodomy is one of the biggest [sins]."
The Conservative Party was less vocal in its opposition to same-sex marriage, with Octavian Petrovici, the vice-president of the party's Bucharest division, stating about same-sex couples that "it's their own choice, and in the same way that we respect the option of every citizen, we respect the choice of these people. However, it is a long way from respecting a choice to making special laws, which do not match the values and principles that our party affirms."
On November 27, 2006, the women's organisation of the Conservative Party adopted a resolution opposing same-sex marriage and same-sex adoption. The resolution declared that, "The family has as its primary aim our continuity and we will continue to support its development, particularly since we will be confronted in the future with an accentuated process of ageing and a significant reduction in the population. We reject categorically the legalisation of same-sex marriage."
On 10 June 2007, after the annual Bucharest GayFest, the Conservative Party reiterated its position on same-sex marriage, stating, "The sexual options of each citizen are accepted and respected in Romania, but from here until the adoption of special laws for sexual minorities is too long a way. We support the definition of marriage as a union between one man and one woman."
- Template:Ro icon A treia ediţie GayFest (The third edition of GayFest), HotNews, 25 May 2006
- Template:Ro icon Homosexualii romani vor casatorie cu acte (Romanian gays want to marry legally), Libertatea, 31 May 2006
- Romanians launch campaign to legalize same-sex marriage, AP/Dallas Voice, 1 June 2006
- Template:Ro icon 'Seful' homosexualilor s-a insurat religios ieri, Libertatea
- Template:Ro icon El este primul român însurat cu un bărbat (He is the first Romanian married with another man), Click.ro, 8 June 2007
- Eckstein cere drepturi civile pentru cuplurile de homosexuali (Eckstein asks for civil rights for homosexual couples), Cotidianul, 23 February 2008
- "Căsătoriile gay, interzise în România", Mediafax, 13 February 2008
- Template:Ro icon Familia Florin şi Raul nu primeşte credit cu buletinul, Cotidianul, 6 June 2006
- Vanghelie: 'Sa se duca in Congo!' (Vanghelie: They should go to Congo!), Libertatea, 1 June 2006
- Vest Flash, Evenimentul Zilei, November 27, 2006
- Gardianul, Romanii, din ce in ce mai ostili relatiilor gay
Romanian Family Code excludes gay marriages - http://english.hotnews.ro/stiri-top_news-2292902-romanian_family_code_exclud
Template:LGBT Romania Template:Same-sex marriage in Europe
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