The New York Times
February 5, 2013

As the British Parliament prepared to vote Tuesday on a law permitting same-sex marriage that has divided church and state, senior cabinet ministers launched a last-minute attempt to deflect an embarrassing rebellion by Conservative lawmakers against Prime Minister David Cameron’s support for the new legislation. A day after the newly-confirmed archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, took office saying he shares the Church of England’s opposition to marriage between people of the same gender, three cabinet officials said in a letter published in The Daily Telegraph that the new legislation was “the right thing to do at the right time.” “Marriage has evolved over time. We believe that opening it up to same-sex couples will strengthen, not weaken, the institution. Attitudes toward gay people have changed. A substantial majority of the public now favor allowing same sex couples to marry, and support has increased rapidly.”