Immigration Minister Peter Dutton, one of the key conservative backers of the same-sex marriage postal survey, has said even though he personally voted “no” he expects the “yes” vote will win.
“My judgment is the ‘yes’ vote will get up and [it will be] a win for the ‘yes’ vote. That’s my judgment of what the outcome will be,” Mr Dutton told radio station 2GB.
“The other aspect I might say about the postal vote is that I think it gives a greater legitimacy to a significant social change.
“I think for same-sex couples if there is to be legislative change, I think that is best done with the support of millions of Australians demonstrated through a ballot as opposed to a five-to-midnight crossing of the floor of four people.”
Dutton pledged to vote for same-sex marriage in parliament if a successful “yes” vote is announced by the Australian Bureau of Statistics on November 15.
But the postal survey campaign has been clouded by incidents of vandalism and violence, as mental health service providers report a spike in demand for their services among LGBTI Australians.
This week the ABS announced that an estimated 62.5 per cent of Australians have returned their postal surveys.
But marriage equality campaigners said there’s “no room for complacency” and the participation of as many Australians as possible is crucial.
The ABS have strongly encouraged survey forms to be posted by October 27, before the deadline on November 7.