Rodney Croome quits as national director of Australian Marriage Equality (AME) to focus on enabling a free vote in parliament.
Rodney Croome founded AME in 2004. He announced his departure in an opinion piece for Guardian Australia. He accused those who believe a plebiscite is inevitable of “lacking political imagination”.
Rodney said he fears a plebiscite will harm vulnerable LGBTI people, including the possibility of suicide.
“If there is a plebiscite, and when the first gay kid dies at his own hand because of the hate and fear-mongering, I have to be able to look at myself in the mirror and know I did everything I could to stop it … everything.
“Sadly, that includes giving up my role at Australian Marriage Equality.”
Rodney Croome told The Guardian his work against the plebiscite put AME in an impossible position. If a plebiscite occured, AME would need to negotiate the best possible terms.
Stopping the Plebiscite
He said he “genuinely believes a plebiscite can be stopped and marriage equality can be passed through parliament”.
“This is based on my near 30-year experience of advocating for LGBTI human rights, and on my conversations with Liberals and Nationals who support marriage equality.”
Rodney Croome previously argued that as the numbers stand in parliament, at least 81 Lower House MPs favour marriage equality, enough to pass it into law if the government allowed a free vote.
“We only need four or five of them to swing behind a bill and the issue that has dogged Australian politics for years will finally be over.”
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