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Australians to get vote on legalizing same-sex marriage, PM says

Australians to get vote on legalizing same-sex marriage, PM says”

While the government revealed today the cost of a voluntary postal plebiscite could cost taxpayers $122 million, the cost of a full plebiscite will be much higher.

Morrison responded by saying that the government took the idea of a plebiscite to the previous federal election, and the Australian people voted for it.

Conservatives who oppose marriage equality have demanded a public plebiscite on the issue, letting the Australian public, rather than Parliament, decide whether to change the legal definition of marriage.

Liberal backbenchers have overwhelmingly agreed to try for a second time to secure a plebiscite on marriage equality, despite an initial attempt being voted down by Labor and crossbench senators in November.

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation has told staff to stop using the phrase "marriage equality" ahead of a vote on whether to extend equal marriage rights to same-sex couples.

Even if this process produced a "yes" result and a parliamentary "conscience" vote then approved a same-sex marriage bill, the outcome would still deny marriage equality by catering for the reactionary prejudices of religious fundamentalists and others.

"It is exposing our children to that kind of hatred".

"This is simply about whether every loving relationship should be treated equally before the law".

Government MP Warren Entsch, a long-standing supporter of changing the law, also urged Australians to have their say.

If the noisy proponents of this issue who are fond of citing "opinion poll results" of 68, 70, 73 per cent etc support are so confident, what would they have to fear from a constitutional referendum?

"Democracy is something that is a gift".

This week, Senator Wong spoke to the Australian parliament in a moving speech about what she thinks a public vote on the legal change will be like for LGBT+ Australians.

"That's what it's supposed to be used for, not something like 'can two people who love each other marry each other?'". "I'm a strong leader", he said.

I think some of the issues that have been raised about issues like religious freedom, we've seen in other parts of the world that when we do redefine marriage that religions, Christians and others, can find it hard.

More than a wasted opportunity, the postal survey is another demonstration that the mechanisms and means of a democracy are the play things of vested interests - in this case the Coalition MPs determined to hold the advance of LGBTI rights at any cost - rather than genuine tools of consultation.

"If Scott Morrison thinks wasting $122 million on a divisive and harmful and non-binding opinion poll is money well spent, is there any wonder that the budget is in such terrible condition on his watch", he said.



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