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Same-sex marriage law could take Canada to the polls

[JURIST] Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin [official website] said Friday that he would be willing to call a national election over the issue of same-sex marriage, the subject of pending legislation in the Canadian House of Commons where Martin presides over a tenuous minority government. Martin said he would be willing to call the vote to "uphold the Charter of Rights [text]", Canada's bill of rights, interpreted by the Canadian Supreme Court as allowing same-sex marriage [JURIST report], against critics who seek to maintain the traditional definition of marriage as between a man a woman. Canadian opposition leader Stephen Harper [Conservative Party of Canada website] has gone on record against federal legalization of same-sex marriage, saying most recently that it might put the country on a "slippery slop" that could eventually led to the recognition of polygamy. Harper says, however, that he would support civil unions for gay and lesbian couples. Canada's CTV News has more.

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