By Peter J. Smith

BOGOTA, June 20, 2007 ( – A band of Colombian lawmakers rallied enough support at the eleventh hour to defeat a bill that would have given certain rights and benefits enjoyed by married couples to homosexual couples.

The bill, backed by Colombian President Alvaro Uribe, would have made Colombia the first nation in Latin America to provide homosexual couples rights to health insurance, inheritance rights, and social security benefits. Pro-family leaders and the Catholic Church warned that the bill was a first step toward same-sex “marriage” and homosexual adoption, which Uribe denies.

However, just as the bill’s passage seemed a foregone conclusion, Senator Manuel Virguez Piraquive made a rare motion that lawmakers bring the bill to a floor vote and cast individual, not party-line votes. With many of the bill’s supporters absent, pro-family defenders won over enough senators allied with Uribe to defeat the bill 34-29 in the 102-member Senate.

Sen. Piraquive’s move crushed the bill for the time being, and buys pro-family advocates a little more time to rally greater pro-family opposition to Uribe. Homosexual lawmakers enraged at Piraquive’s maneuver vowed to restart the process on the bill when the Colombian Congress reconvenes July 20.

Colombia has come under intense pressure from the United Nations to advance its pro-homosexual and abortion agenda, and is seen as the chink in the pro-family and pro-life armor of Latin America. Colombia became the first nation in Latin America to legalize abortion in cases of rape and incest last year after the Constitutional Court overturned the ban May 10, 2006 calling it “disproportionate” and “irrational.”

The case meant victory for population control groups and abortion activist Monica Roa of the UN funded Women’s Link Worldwide, who admitted that her tactic was to use “extreme cases” to open up abortion on demand.

“The future, not only of Colombia, but of all of Latin America is at stake,” stated Cardinal Alfonso Llopez Trujillo last year, as he begged for prayers for his besieged country.  “The loss of one country will substantially weaken the pro-life fabric of all of Latin America.  What begins as a small hole will end as a huge tear allowing much evil to come in.  We would no longer be a solid bloc protecting and loving all of life.”

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