Australian PM insists on gay marriage vote

gay marriage

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has insisted that a plebiscite is the best approach to same sex marriage despite mountinng pressure for him to legislate.

In response to a letter from 20 chief executives urging him bring forward legislation and finally make gay marriage legal in Australia, the PM declared:

“Our policy is very well known, which we took to the election, is that there should be a plebiscite on the issue first.”

Under Australian law, plebiscites are advisory public votes held on non-constitutional matters.

The Liberal Party policy has proved highly controversial, with many fearing a plebiscite might encourage homophobia. In November the opposition Labour Party blocked the bill which would have introduced the vote, leading to legislative stalemate.

Mr Turnbull continued:

“The Labor Party has frustrated that by opposing it in the Senate and this despite the fact that [Leader of the Opposition] Mr Shorten only three years ago gave his very public and vocal support for a plebiscite, which would give every Australian a say on the matter.”

The companies claim the government should “legislate for marriage equality so the government can get on with its core economic agenda”. Signatories include airline Qantas, tech giant Apple, and telecoms firms Telstra and Optus.

Immigration Minister Peter angrily dismissed the letter, saying it was “bizarre” and an”outrage” and telling the companies to stop shovingpolitically correct nonsense down our throats”.

Photo of Malcolm Turnbull by CeBIT Australia via Flickr under a Creative Commons licence

Stowe Family Law Web Team

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