Economy

Christopher Pyne's same-sex marriage bombshell recording

Christopher Pyne's same-sex marriage bombshell recording”

Tony Abbott has lashed out at Christopher Pyne, accusing the cabinet minister of not being loyal to him during his prime ministership.

In the tape, acquired by News Corp and Sky News political commentator Andrew Bolt, Pyne appeared to suggest that there would be a parliamentary vote on SSM that would happen "sooner than everyone thinks", a complete turnaround from the current government policy which is a public vote, called a plebiscite.

"This guy should be in the Labor Party!"

"This is one of the reasons people turn off politicians, because we don't tell them what we think, and it looks like one of our number has been caught out", he told Ray Hadley on 2GB radio. "I've been with the Liberal Party since I was 17, just for the record".

'From Pyne's comments I think the most reprehensible of those comments were that every single ballot he proudly proclaims his disloyalty, ' she said.

Mr Turnbull declined to criticise Mr Pyne, and reiterated the Liberal Party's policy on same-sex marriage.

Mr Pyne told ABC's Q&A on Monday night he would "like to think" he was still friends with former Prime Minister Tony Abbott, who had accused him of being "disloyal".

'The Minister said that whilst marriage equality had failed to materialise over the last two years, it would become a reality eventually, ' the statement said. "And that was for Tony Abbott".

Guest host Virginia Trioli pressed Mr Pyne further, asking if he was still friends with the former PM.

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Mr Pyne also addressed his comments in the leaked tapes that marriage equality might "be sooner than everyone thinks". "I, along with Peta Credlin, Andrew Hirst, Mark Textor, Julie Bishop, and a couple of other people, were absolutely central to him becoming prime minister and defeating the Labor Party in 2013 and nearly defeating them in 2010".

"To dump the plebiscite, to do anything without a plebiscite, would be a breach of faith with the people", he warned.

And then, referring to marriage equality, he said: "We're going to get it". So we are actually doing pretty well, we moderates for you in Canberra. A majority of parliamentarians are in favour of it. "That's the policy we've honoured in this parliament", he told Network Seven.

Mr Turnbull stressed the Coalition's same sex marriage policy of a plebiscite was "very clear and we have no plans to change it".

"It's been sorted out in the UK".

Meanwhile, West Australian Liberal senator Dean Smith, who has long argued for a free vote on marriage equality, also suggested it might soon be time for Turnbull government to abandon its plans for a plebiscite. "At the end, why have the argument about a referendum?" "If they'd voted for the plebiscite, we could have had marriage equality in February or March of 2017".

"Guess what - the sky has not fallen".

"They're getting the benefits they should get, getting treated equally under the law, except in some states where people are resisting giving out marriage licences".



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