The Australian prime minister thinks everyone should have a say on marriage equality, not just LGBT people.
Malcolm Turnbull, whose government are planning a controversial public vote on the issue, has stated that changing the definition of marriage by including same-sex couples affects “every Australian”.
He said on ABC: “It affects not just LGBTI Australians, it affects everybody… the way your proposition would go is you’d say the only people that should be entitled to have a say on this are gay Australians.”
Turnbull also went on to agree that the public vote is “a novel approach”, but was adamant that the method “is perfectly democratic”.
He also denied that the plebiscite legislation will fail in the Senate, even though 40 senators have pledged to vote against it – only 38 are needed to block the proposal in the upper house.
He continued: “Why wouldn’t the Labour party and others who support gays being able to get married, LGBTI couples being able to get married – and Lucy and I support that – why wouldn’t we grab this opportunity and say, ‘Look, it may not be the perfect way of resolving the matter from your point of view, but grab it, it will be carried, it will be done’?”
Same-sex marriage is illegal in Australia, and while the current government plans a plebiscite on the issue, critics claim it will be a costly procedure that will give homophobes a platform to voice hate – which it already has.
The campaign’s founder, Joshua Sasse, has announced that he and fiancee Kylie Minogue won’t be getting married until same-sex couples can do the same.
Words Bryan Bernal