On March 5th, 2014, the Juridical Commission of Romania’s Chamber of Deputies rejected a bill proposing legal recognition for civil partnerships signed before a notary. The bill had already been rejected by Romania’s Senate (with 105 votes against and 2 in favor).
After its unanimous rejection by the Juridical Commission, the last chance would be for it to be introduced directly to the plenary session of the Chamber of Deputies. This is exactly what its sponsor, Remus Cernea, independent Member of Parliament and a promoter of secular humanism, intends to do, though with little chances of success.
The law was presented as a non-discriminatory set of provisions for both “heterosexual and same-sex couples” who could “enjoy rights like the right to inheritance, the right to become a co-beneficiary on the other’s health insurance, the right to apply for [housing] loans as joint debtors”.
Last month, Romania’s pro-family associations sent a memorandum to the Parliament showing the bill does not actually bring anything new to the existing marriage law, its sole purpose being to introduce a redefinition of the traditional notion of family. They also warned that one of the bill effects would be to undermine the institution of marriage by making it equal with a less formal union aimed at getting benefits without assuming any responsibilities.
But the beginning of March saw an open letter in support of the bill coming from the Intergroup on LGBT Rights from the European Parliament and signed by its co-presidents, Michael Cashman and Ulrike Lunacek.
Despite the bill sponsor’s efforts to convince that Romanian lawmakers should do what they were suggested by their European colleagues, and despite his inviting to the debates a homosexual couple who gave press statements that they wanted to be able to apply jointly for a housing loan, the members of the Juridical Commission unanimously rejected the bill.
In a move made to impress, Mr. Cernea even quoted a Bible verse about love, which upset both the representative of the Romanian Orthodox Church and the representative of the Jewish community. The conclusion of the commission was summarized by a Socialist Democratic Party member, Daniel Florea, who declared for the Pro TV national channel: “Their preference is their business. We, as lawmakers, believe things are already well-established in existing law”.
Maybe the most interesting speech against the bill was delivered by Mrs. Diana Tusha, MP on behalf of the Christian Democratic National Peasants’ Party, who defended the natural notions of marriage and family and explained the bill’s hidden political purpose as pertaining to the revolutionary agenda of the extreme left.
She also warned that the representatives of the people should act according to the people’s core values, not according to alien values: “I think we had enough of the harmful 50-year experience of communism, when laws were forcefully imposed on us with no regard for Romanian specific. There is no need to traumatize further generations in the name of some illusory progress made through alien recipes. Such a recipe is cultural Marxism, represented by Mr. Cernea. It promotes the destruction of family, of myths and symbols and finally it deconstructs human conduct by completely removing the pillars which support it”.
MP Diana Tusha said that law should reinforce the real state of facts, not aim at bending reality to fit into false concepts: “Trying to legislate for civil partnership is trying to prove that it suffices to adopt a set of laws in order to make people think and feel differently and that one can always redesign the ideals and values of humanity according to our own will”.