Joining the modern world, Germany is likely to legalize same-sex marriage this week after Chancellor Angela Merkel dropped her opposition to the measure.
The vote will be held on Friday in Parliament, a snap referendum hastily assembled once Merkel dropped her public opposition. Social Democrats, Greens, and the Linke Party had a hand in adding the bill to Parliament.
The bill is widely supported by most parties and is expected to pass, particularly after Merkel gave members of her own party her blessing to vote their conscience.
The basis of Merkel’s previous opposition to the bill was in concern for children who may be adopted by same-sex couples. Merkel says her opinion on the matter changed after spending time with a lesbian couple who fostered eight children.
As Merkel’s party was the only holdout, other parties upped political pressure to force the bill to a vote ahead of this week.
Public support for same-sex marriage legalization has grown in recent years in Germany, echoing the support by parties. In a poll conducted in April of this year, a full 75% of German citizens support marriage equality.
The first nation to legalize same-sex marriage was the Netherlands, all the way back in 2000.
It has been just over two years since America legalized same-sex marriage, and just over four years since France did the same. The U.K. legalized gay marriage in 2014, while Ireland legalized it in 2015.