Couple who planned to divorce if same-sex marriage passes renege on promise

Overview of the final vote on the Marriage Amendment Bill in the House of Representatives at Parliament House in Canberra, Thursday, December 7, 2017. (AAP Image/Lukas Coch) NO ARCHIVINGThey were the Canberra couple who created a national stir in 2015 with their stance against same-sex marriage.
Nanjing Night Net

Nick and Sarah Jensen caused controversy following a first-person piece written by Mr Jensen promising to divorce if same-sex marriage was legalised in Australia.

“My wife and I, as a matter of conscience, refuse to recognise the government’s regulation of marriage if its definition includes the solemnisation of same-sex couples,” he wrote at the time.

While their promise may have seemed outlandish at the time, two years later, same-sex marriage in Australia has become a reality, after it passed a vote in the House of Representatives on Thursday.

So will the Jensens follow through with their public promise to split? The short answer is no.

In a statement to The Canberra Times, Mr Jensen said he doesn’t intend to file for divorce in the wake of the historic vote.

“My previous public comments regarding civil divorce never envisaged me separating from my wife, but rather our marriage from the state,” he said.

“The legislation currently makes it untenable for us to do this under the law. The point we were highlighting, and that still stands however, is the fact that a redefinition of marriage changes the agreement under which we were originally married.

“We will be making no further comment.”

The original article penned by Mr Jensen triggered a wave of online responses at the time, which included a mock party set up with a Facebook page called “Celebrating Nick and Sarah Jensen’s Divorce” attracting more than 140,000 people.

The first same-sex weddings in Australia will be carried out on January 9, after the same-sex marriage bill was given royal assent by Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove on Friday.

Same-sex weddings that were carried out overseas will now be officially recognised in Australia as part of the historic legislation.

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