Gay marriage legalisation bid fails
Australian politicians have overwhelmingly rejected a bill that would have legalised gay marriage.
The House of Representatives voted 98-42 against the legislation.
It was the first of four bills introduced to Parliament that aim to lift the country's ban on same-sex marriages.
A separate bill was also being debated in the Senate.
Polls show that most Australians support gay marriage. But the Liberal Party-led conservative opposition coalition and many in the ruling centre-left Labour Party are against it.
Australian law defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman. Labour lifted its long-standing opposition to gay marriage last year, but prime minister Julia Gillard remains opposed to it.