OTTAWA, Ontario, June 14, 2011 ( – Canada’s ruling Conservative party re-confirmed its support for true marriage at its national convention Saturday, but at the same time appears to have removed the onus from its newly-elected majority government from acting on the issue.


The party’s constitution had said that a Conservative government “will support” legislation defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

At their national convention in Ottawa on Saturday, party delegates voted to reword the policy to state that the Conservative Party simply “supports” legislation defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

While the vote reconfirms the party’s support for true marriage, there are concerns that the change signals a softening in their stance, especially when combined with Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s vow on the campaign trail in April that he had “no intention” of opening debate on same-sex “marriage” or abortion.

“Our agenda is the same agenda with a majority government or a minority government,” he added.

The Conservative Government brought forward a vote on same-sex “marriage” after it was first elected in 2006, but they have avoided the issue since that motion was defeated.

At the convention, the party also voted to spell out more explicitly its support for freedom of religion regarding same-sex “marriage.”

The previous wording had stated simply that the Conservative Party “supports the freedom of religious organizations to determine their own practices with respect to marriage.”

The new wording, separated out into a new clause, says the party “supports the freedom of religious organizations to refuse to perform unions or allow the use of their facilities for events that are incompatible with their faith and beliefs.”

The use of religious facilities has been contentious since same-sex “marriage” was legalized in 2005.  That very year, a chapter of the Knights of Columbus, a Catholic fraternal organization, was ordered to pay damages to a lesbian couple after the Knights cancelled a hall rental contract upon finding out that the couple was homosexual.