Mr Turnbull says same-sex marriage “will sail through”

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Marriage equality remains a point of contention between the two major parties. In the lead up to Saturday’s Federal Election, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has said he is confident that MPs will vote in favour of same-sex marriage if the public vote ‘yes’ in the proposed plebiscite. But the Opposition says the PM’s proposed plebiscite is a “taxpayer-funded platform for homophobia”.

In March, Prime Minister Turnbull refused to endorse Attorney-General George Brandis’ promise to hold a same-sex marriage plebiscite and change the Marriage Act “by the end of the year”. However, following pressure from the public, a $160 million national vote will be held.

The Government is yet to outline any details about when the plebiscite would take place, though it may occur as early as the end of this year. A public vote in favour of same-sex marriage is not binding, however, and any change to the Marriage Act would need Senate approval.

Mr Turnbull expects that the public will support same-sex marriage and that the issue will “see an overwhelming majority of MPs and senators voting for it.” He has said, however, that he will allow Coalition MPs to have a conscience vote in Parliament.

Despite being opposed to same-sex marriage, Treasurer Scott Morrison, along with Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce, have both promised to back same-sex marriage if the plebiscite vote is in favour.

“I’m happy to respect the decision that the country makes on this. If the plebiscite carries, then the legislation should pass. That’s my view. If the plebiscite does not carry, then I would expect that would be the end of the matter.” Mr Morrison said.

“I will follow the instructions of the Australian people,” Mr Joyce said on radio on Tuesday morning.

It may not be a done deal, however, with Mr Turnbull accused of downplaying concerns on the plebiscite by saying he was confident that if the public votes in favour, so would Parliament. “It will sail through, absolutely sail through,” he said.

Conservative Liberal senators Cory Bernardi, Eric Abetz and Zed Seselja are firmly against same-sex marriage, indicating that they will vote to keep the traditional definition of marriage as ‘between a man and a woman’, regardless of the plebiscite outcome.

Deputy Labor leader Tanya Plibersek has called the Coalition’s bluff, saying Mr Turnbull’s plebiscite was a pointless “taxpayer-funded platform for homophobia”.

“Why are we spending $160 million on an opinion poll that the Government is going to ignore?” she asked.

She promised that if Labor won on Saturday, legislation to legalise same-sex marriage would be introduced within 100 days of its winning.  

Ms Plibersek’s sentiments were echoed by Greens leader Adam Bandt when he tweeted, “PM now says #equalmarriage plebiscite won’t even bind his MPs & they’ll have free vote. So why not just ditch plebiscite & vote on bill now?”

On Monday night, Tony Abbott’s former chief of staff Peta Credlin predicted that the “schism” in the Coalition over its same-sex marriage plebiscite could hurt Mr Turnbull’s chances of maintaining his prime ministership.

“I think it will be a very big schism inside the Liberal Party going back to territory of 2009,” she said.

She also pointed out that the Government has failed to announce “any plan B” if the plebiscite fails to pass.

“The Government might claim a mandate but if Labor block it and the Greens block it in the upper house, what is plan B?

“All you hear from government ministers is ‘we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it’,” she said.

What do you think? Is a Coalition government likely to vote in favour of same-sex marriage if the plebiscite passes? Would you like to see a public vote happen? Do you think we should save the $160 million and simply have Parliament do what its paid to do and vote on the same-sex marriage bill?

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Written by ameliath

200 Comments

Total Comments: 200
  1. 0
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    I don”t know where you get the notion that the majority of Australians are for same sex marriage I don”t know of anyone who is for it apart from Shorten and his Labor party as a matter of fact I know of a lot of people who are dead said against it including me.

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      Hi Robbo,
      Add me to the dead set against.

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      I’m with you robbo. But it will be the same as Brexit: us oldies are steeped in tradition and the young ones are for it. So if we come out and vote against it they’ll only agitate for a re-run and tell us we are not entitled to vote because it’s their future. Look what’s happening in England.

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      No one is game to say what will happen if the public vote against it.

      What about those people who now have their birth certificates changes to no specific gender?

    • 0
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      You old people need to get over it – you are not being asked to convert – you are simply being asked to consider the rights of others.

      The polls say the majority of Australian’s understand that it the LBGTI community should have same rights as anyone else.

      As a senior, I would not swap my sexual preferences and have to put up with the bigotry and legal disadvantages that LGBTI Australians have to suffer – so I get the reason they need to have the same rights as other Australians.

      Therefore I have no problem respecting their rights. I think the government should vote their conscience in parliament and move on instead of an expensive, divisive plebiscite – that is also likely to be rigged – but such is our corrupt politics these days.

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      Who says we are old Reasons perhaps the previous posters only have morals and ethics because that was how we where brought up.

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      Like you Robbo nearly everyone I have spoken to or shared the comment with is, as you put it ‘dead set against’ same sex marriage.
      And “Reasons’ whoever you are these are not all ‘old people’ as you so
      charmingly put it – half of them are under 40, and many in their 20’s.

    • 0
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      You are spot on “Reasons”.
      Morals and ethics have nothing to do with this “robbo” the issue is being disputed by those who have never recovered from the religious brain-washing of their youth. Because it is against the teaching of religious groups should NOT prevent clear thinking people from making their own decisions.
      All this clap trap about how marriage being ordained by God when marriage was in place amoungst pagans well before Jesus was born. In fact if we believe the Bible Mary, his mother, was a Virgin which, if true, means the marriage was never consummated and was in fact therefore null and void.
      The lack of tolerance is quite staggering on this issue.

    • 0
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      Yeah Troubador – I am REALLY confident that lots of 20-40 years olds are looking at and commenting on this SENIORS site.

      Probably about as confident as I am that the sun will come up in the WEST tomorrow morning.

    • 0
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      Reasons, you wrote “bigotry and legal disadvantages that LGBTI Australians have to suffer”. The exact same and whatever else you come up with can be said those that wish to have a polygamous lifestyle. Can you provide evidence to the contrary.
      If you support only gay marriage and not polygamy then it is rather hypocritical.
      BTW do you know what bigotry is, being against gay marriage does not make you a bigot.
      BIGOT:a person who is intolerant towards those holding different opinions.
      Being tolerant does not mean that you have to agree with it.
      The only intolerance I can see in the above posts are yours and Tom tank, so who is the real bigot.

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      Graeme – throwing polygamy into the equation is called an extension of argument in debating – totally irrelevant to the debate and of no interest to the Australian public – but worth a try if the opponent is silly enough to take the bate and chases the irrelevant point.

      If people were tolerant and took the time to walk in LGBTI shoes – we would not have to have this plebiscite and it would walk through parliament and we would move on with marriage equality accepted.

    • 0
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      I can’t agree with you Reasons. Australians will be asked for their opinion on same sex marriage in the proposed plebiscite, not how they feel about what effect it has on others.

    • 0
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      SSM really does not bother me. Though, it is interesting, that on past proposals in the Australian parliament for SSM it was rejected on 7 different occasions.
      Decriminalisation of homosexuality was imposed on to our society by tweaking the Discrimination Act first and then legislated in state parliaments. I think Tasmania was the last state to do so after a very long time. One has to wonder if a plebiscite was held on the homosexuality issue back then whether the majority would have said YES or NO. We’ll never know, but I reckon ,that it would have been a huge NO. Penny Wong’s reasons and fears against the plan for current plebiscite on the issue of SSM are unfounded. If she really feared being abused she wouldn’t have ‘come-out’ ages ago in the first place. What Penny Wong fears is that the plebiscite outcome will be a huge NO. So if the outcome is NO then it’s the will of the majority in our society that LGBTI members will have to live with. If it’s a YES then all against SSM will have to live with it.

    • 0
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      I agree Old Man – the plebiscite wording will be skewed by the Libs to try and effect a no vote.

      The wording will go something like this…

      “Considering the high likelihood of God striking you, your family and your pets STONE DEAD on leaving the voting booth should you vote YES to marriage equality – please vote YES if you dare – or NO if you want to live. Good Luck!

    • 0
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      Reason, it is only irrelevant to you, because it points out the hypocrisy of those that support gay marriage and not polygamy. I am sure that those that want a polygamous relationship would not be happy with you calling them irrelevant.
      Somehow you think it is not correct to discriminate against 2 people, but if you discriminate against 3 or more then it’s irrelevant?
      I am ambivalent to both gay marriage and polygamy, but find it totally hypocritical that you and many others can support one and not the other when the exact same reasoning applies to both cases with just a change of numbers.
      Your excuse that “no interest to the Australian public ” is simply that an excuse and does not change your hypocrisy.

    • 0
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      Graeme? What about the issue of some men and women wanting to marry their pets such as cats, dogs, reptiles etc. Is it not hypocritical not to allow this? How far can the society go in changing its traditional structures to progressive ones?

    • 0
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      HS, bestiality is a bit different to polygamy as you well know. For thousands of years polygamy has been supported by countless number of societies and is still done so today.
      You may have desires to have relationships with your pets but 99.9999999% of people do not. Plus can you tell me how the pet is able to express it’s consent?
      But I do agree in principle to the problem of determining deviant behaviour.
      Is there a threshold percentage of participation below which behaviour changes from acceptable to deviant, and who gets to set this threshold?

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      The marriage was consummated, because Jesus had brothers.

    • 0
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      Let them marry. It does not affect me in any way if they do, but it affects them greatly if they can’t. It is the only legal way you can currently have an incontestable will if one partner dies, and all kinds of other legal privileges that married couples have that are not available to “partners”.

    • 0
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      Not with you on this at all Robbo. Liberty for one and for all.

      Just the same, I am not sure why the word ‘marriage’ has to be used rather than something else meaning fully fledged civil partnership. The religions have taken the word ‘marriage’ to mean something which same-sex partnership doesn’t mean to them and I don’t see that there was any need to push that in their (the religious side) face when all that was really required for equality of liberty was equality of situational rights.

      On ‘deviant behaviour’ later in the replies above. Deviance is the degree of rarity compared with the norm and not an acceptable reason for maintaining a different qualtiy of liberty for one than for another UNLESS it also involves something which negatively impacts the rights of others. You would be hard pressed, I think, to call same-sex relationships deviant given the substantial percentage of total relationships they represent. It would be much more difficult again to prove that the form of relationship negatively impacts the rights of others. The simple truth if you are prepared to look at it is that by denying equal liberty to those in same sex relationships as in male/female relationships we are negatively impacting a significant sector of society for no good socially protective reason.

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      Add me to the dead set against too — I am all for legal rights and allowing them to be together — but NOT marriage.

      I am also VERY much against the Gay Mardi Gras.

  2. 0
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    How come a group of people who represent such a small percentAge of the poulation can wield so much power and influence
    Ehy is everyone so afraid of them?

    • 0
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      Agree entirely Steff. The only reason Turnbull is promoting the plebiscite is to secure the homosexual vote.

      He did the same thing with the Muslims. Over the last twelve months he has given them $10 million dollars to buy their votes.

    • 0
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      Gee Whiz and Bill Shorten hasn”t?

    • 0
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      Steff, this happens with religions, too. To say which ONE would mean this comment would be deleted, but they represent about 2.5% of the population. Guessed it?

    • 0
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      How come a group of people who represent such a small percentAge of the poulation can wield so much power and influence
      Ehy is everyone so afraid of them?

      – Interesting question. Age Pensioners represent about 20% of voters, When will Age Pensioners wake up to themselves that they are real power too?

    • 0
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      In case no one noticed in 1998 the number of Muslims immigrants entering Australia increased dramatically under Labor’s watch especially the number that could afford to invest $60,000 or was it $600,000?

    • 0
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      HS, the truth is a very controversial subject on this site, and although I love to speak and hear it, we often have our comments deleted. I HOPE YOURS ISN’T! Mine have been.
      Labor’s Al Grassby also let MANY criminals into this country. Money talks,no one walks.
      Things that are ever so evident to you and I the government closes an, no, BOTH eyes to because they are only interested in appeasing the majority so they can fill their pockets while they are in office – a short term answer to THEIR lives while it is a death sentence to the country.
      I hope this isn’t deleted.

    • 0
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      Who are Them mate …. respect please them …are also people same as you and all of us no difference at all
      Just in case you need education this article will give you small clue have a read

      https://www.humanrights.gov.au/face-facts-lesbian-gay-bisexual-trans-and-intersex-people

      Nothing wrong with Muslim people by the way HS is the way we screen the immigrants that apply or arrive by boat or whatever from wherever they come from.

      Read and learn about our immigration and border protection Law and procedures you will find lots of answers

    • 0
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      No need to be afraid of them but there is a need to respect them.

    • 0
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      Steff, haven’t you noticed that these days minorities rule, and they owe their success to stereotyping with labels invented for those who dare to differ. Once the label is attached, it cannot be removed and will become incontrovertible proof of bigotry and intolerance, irrespective of a mass of evidence in support of the opinions held.

      Radical feminists are a classic example and claim to be a persecuted minority group despite the fact that women form a slightly greater percentage of the population than men. Although prostate cancer kills more people than breast cancer, compare the funding and concern. There is an office for the status of women, no such organisation for men. I could go on, but I am already labelled a misogynist.

      In Tasmania $5 million in compensation was paid to the so-called stolen generation, yet the heavily biased, pro-aboriginal Bringing them Home Report grudgingly admits that there was no stolen generation in Tasmania. Recent publicity showed that funding for aboriginal legal aid in Tasmania was $2.3 million a year, for others there is practically nothing. Much more factual information could be presented but would be disregarded because the racist label defeats any logical argument.

      Although it is not only politically incorrect to promote the traditional views of marriage, as the Catholic Church recently discovered in Hobart, doing so can lead to legal consequences and will certainly earn the homophobic label. Yet those who deviate from the traditional view of marriage are entirely free to promote their views, immune from any form of legal redress and the label.

      The latest entry in this contest relates to those who do not accept an argument that women are inferior to men. Those of this persuasion have long lists of rules and demands totally at odds with our democratic way of life, but to publicly list them would also earn the Islamophobic label.

      Like many others, I lost family members who died in world wars to protect our democracy and way of life. It is becoming increasingly apparent that they wasted their lives because what could not be achieved by force of arms is succeeding by intimidation. The pen is indeed mightier than the sword.

  3. 0
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    Blackmailing the politicians into voting “yes” is wrong. If they vote “no” they are branded homophobic. Peoples choice or pollies with no choice?

    • 0
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      A plebiscite is a referendum on an issue where – if a majority of Australian’s vote for marriage equality – that majority will of the people needs to be passed through parliament.

      A democracy can’t have a bunch of right-wing fruit-loops like Bernardy, Andrews, Abbott, Brandis, Abetz, Dutton, etc then deciding their whacko ideology and beliefs have far more weight than the majority of Australians – and try to overturn the majority decision should it be in favour of marriage equality.

    • 0
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      A plebiscite is NOT a referendum. A plebiscite is a nationwide vote to gauge public feedback on a political proposal. This is different to a referendum which is a national vote on an amendment to the Constitution

    • 0
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      Pedantics – but a plebiscite is better – you only need a majority of people across Australia for it to be the will of the people – a referendum requires a majority of voters in a majority of states.

    • 0
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      It is not pedantics, there is one huge difference between them, in that there is no requirements for the pollies to follow the outcome of a plebiscite. If the outcome is close they can rightfully say that it is only the feeling of the the majority at this moment and in a few months this might change.

    • 0
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      A plebiscite is non-binding but, it will demonstrate the will of the people one way or another to force or reject SSM legislation.

    • 0
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      Yes I agree, but only if definitive, if there is only a 1 or 2 percent difference in the vote, no matter which way it goes, then it would be totally valid to say that the result may differ if held a year later

    • 0
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      I agree Graeme, a plebiscite is not a referendum. A plebiscite is the means for a cowardly government to make a decision with having to accept any blame. Don’t forget, this is an Abbott government policy that Turnbull has to support to keep the rat-bag right quiet.

    • 0
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      The homophobes will come out of the woodwork as soon as the date of the plebiscite is announced. You haven’t seen hate until you’ve witnessed someone like Danny Nahlia preach.

      A plebiscite is not legally binding on the parliament. Spend $160 Mill and Tony Abbott, George Brandis, Loyenhelm, Abetts et al will still vote against it.

      A conscience vote assumes that MPs have a conscience.
      ???

    • 0
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      The homophobes will come out of the woodwork as soon as the date of the plebiscite is announced. You haven’t seen hate until you’ve witnessed someone like Danny Nahlia preach.

      A plebiscite is not legally binding on the parliament. Spend $160 Mill and Tony Abbott, George Brandis, Loyenhelm, Abetts et al will still vote against it.

      A conscience vote assumes that MPs have a conscience.
      ???

  4. 0
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    If Turnbull is convinced that most people are for it then pass the legal changes required. A plebiscite is just a waste of money , not economically appropriate in times of hardship particularly as the cost will be significantly higher dealing with the outomes of the process. Typical of the Turnbull government or rather rather lack of government that we have become used to. No real plan and no guts to tackle major issues.

    • 0
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      I agree completely — this is a waste of money! Regardless of the result of the plebiscite there is no obligation on the part of the government to pass/not pass a bill in relation to it. It is just a very expensive poll.

  5. 0
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    I’m dead agains it and all the people in my family both young and old are dead against.

    • 0
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      Hear! Hear! I am dead against the plebiscite, too, Merri. Parliament should just amend the marriage act to allow same-sex marriage.

  6. 0
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    I couldn’t give a “rat’s” one way or the other on this issue. Turnaway is walking the tightrope on this one, not committing himself so as to get as many votes as possible without giving an answer, and making another show that he is as weak as water. Pathetic!

  7. 0
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    Totally agree with the plebiscite as this is a decision to be made by the PEOPLE and not the pollies. The decision is a social one and not a political one.

    • 0
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      The problem is that the polies don’t actually have to follow a plebiscites outcome, as it is nothing more than a nationwide opinion pole.
      If a plebiscite came out 70-30 then the polies would be stupid to ignore it, but if it were only 51-49, then they could use the excuse that the margin is so small that in a few months with people changing their mind the result may be different.

    • 0
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      I disagree on the plebiscite Auction Girl. Only because it is time and money spent on something that any applying their sense of a fair go will recognise as consistent with our goal of maximising liberty.

      Government should simply show leadership, go ahead and ratify same sex marriage as a matter of justice and liberty.

  8. 0
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    Whilst we are having a plebiscite on same sex marriage, how about including a question to the people as to legalising euthanasia, which to my thought is a far more important subject than same sex marriage, a union which is already available by way of a civil union to those persons who wish to say I’m a married to a person of the same sex.

    • 0
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      Totally agree, and why not throw in a few other contentious issue as well such as medical marijuana and a few others. The cost of a plebiscite is not the counting.
      But this will never happen as the pollies don’t want the people to have say in how the country is run

  9. 0
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    I do not care what people do in the privacy of their own home. I am against same sex ‘marriage’ in that its needs to find its own name. Marriage is the unity between a male and a female and should be kept as such.
    If others want to carry on differently, that is their choice, whether I agree or not. But find another name for it please.

    • 0
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      You would need to find another name that has the same legal standing. e.g. on one partners death the property automatically goes to the other part, incontestably. The only way that happens now if the two people are Married.

  10. 0
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    What an inane comment Reasons. We were talking about discussions in general not necessarily
    from this site – there is more in the world out there you know!! Also, for your information
    some younger people do check out this site, they like to have a good knowledge of all
    classes of society.

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