Australia Moving Towards Legalizing Gay Marriage

Tori Johnson left behind his partner of 14 years Thomas Zinn in December 2014

In an effort to strong-arm the Senate ahead of the reintroduction of the plebiscite legislation, the finance minister, Mathias Cormann, told reporters after the Liberal party meeting if there were concerns about the legality of the voluntary postal vote, "then I would encourage those Senators who are so concerned to consider supporting the government's bill for a compulsory attendance plebiscite".

During the election campaign, the government of prime minister Malcolm Turnbull promised a "plebiscite", and intends to promptly return the folder in front of the Senate. These costs included damaging the parties by providing fuel to an already tense debate among liberals and conservatives, and costing the equivalent of $135 million United States dollars to hold a vote, the Chicago Tribune reported.

Several gay senators made impassioned pleas against the plan at the time, saying it would lead to denigration of their families and subject them to hate speech.

The debate comes as an Essential poll found 43 per cent of voters approved holding a voluntary postal plebiscite followed by a vote in parliament, while 38 per cent disapproved.

Legislation for a plebiscite, as distinct from a postal ballot, on November 25, will be voted on (and, we presume, defeated) in the Senate, probably this week. The government on Tuesday endorsed the party decision to ask the Senate this week to reconsider allowing the plebiscite, which would be held November 25.

Cormann announced it would be the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) rather than the Australian Electoral Commission that would run a postal vote.

Sydney's Catholic Archbishop Anthony Fisher and his Anglican counterpart, Archbishop Glenn Davies, have criticised a proposed Bill to permit same-sex marriage in Australia as failing to protect religious freedom.

If the postal ballot comes back with a majority "yes", a private member's bill will go to parliament, with Liberal members exercising a free vote on it.

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"
The Nationals have been staunch supporters of the plebiscite, with MP Andrew Broad warning the coalition could split if the policy was dumped.
They will join talks on the mechanics of a potential postal vote in Canberra on Tuesday".

"I'll be voting yes, as will (my wife), I'm very open about that but the Australian people are never wrong when they vote, whether it's for governments or on matters like this, their vote will be respected", Turnbull said.

Abbott believes it would be better to keep trying to get the original plebiscite through the upper house.

An advertising blitz saw that number of unenrolled young people drop dramatically, but more than a year on, there will be many more people who have become old enough to vote and now need to enrol, or who have moved home, changed their name or updated their details enough that the AEC needs to be informed.

"I'm a strong leader".

Mr Bernardi has said he would vote against gay marriage, regardless of a plebiscite result.

The non-binding and non-compulsory postal ballot will ask voters: "Should the law be changed to allow same-sex couples to be married?"

The Prime Minister spoke first, urging the party room to abide by an election commitment to give people a choice to vote on the matter.

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