New Zealand expected to pass marriage equality Wednesday

[Update 4/16/13: Reports from New Zealand now say the vote in Parliament could take place up to 90 minutes later than the times given below.]

If you stay up late enough Tuesday night, you can watch New Zealand become the 13th country to legalize same-sex marriage nationwide. Parliament is expected to cast its final vote around 7:30 p.m. local time, which is 12:30 a.m. in Los Angeles (just after midnight Tuesday night) and 3:30 a.m. Wednesday in New York City.

You can watch MPs vote live at http://www.parliament.nz/en-NZ/AboutParl/SeeHear/PTV/.

Following the final vote in Parliament, the bill will need to be signed by the Sovereign or the Sovereign's representative in New Zealand, the Governor-General. This is called "Royal assent" and is just a formality nowadays. Same-sex couples are expected to start marrying in August.

Same-sex marriage is legal in Argentina (2010), Belgium (2003), Canada (2005), Denmark (2012), Iceland (2010), the Netherlands (2001) and the Caribbean island of Saba (2012), Norway (2009), Portugal (2010), South Africa (2006), Spain (2005), Sweden (2009) and Uruguay (the law will come into force in July 2013). It also is legal in some states of Mexico and Brazil.

In the U.S., same-sex marriage is legal in Connecticut (2008), Iowa (2009), Maine (2012), Maryland (2012), Massachusetts (2004), New Hampshire (2010), New York (2011), Vermont (2009) and Washington (2012) -- and in Washington, D.C. (2010). It also is legal within the Suquamish Indian tribe in Washington state (2011), within the Coquille Indian tribe in Oregon (2009), and within the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians in Michigan (2013). [Photo credit]

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