Shorten, Not Turnbull, Holds Key To Marriage Equality Plebiscite

largest marriage equality campaign Marriage Equality Plebiscite

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten is playing his cards close to his chest with the Marriage Equality Plebiscite

But as far as the proposed legislation to enable a same-sex marriage plebiscite is concerned, he holds all the aces.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, who went to the polls promising a public vote on the issue before the year’s end, has been left with a dead man’s hand.

It’s a complex political issue.

Nick Xenophon Team

But with the Nick Xenophon Team confirming they will not support a plebiscite. The Greens and Senator Derryn Hinch, it is dead in the water.

That is assuming, of course, that Labor goes through with its threat to block the bill – by no means guaranteed.

Senator Pauline Hanson

One Nation Senator Pauline Hanson holds four crossbench positions. They advocate for delaying the plebiscite to the next election to reduce costs.

So, without the Nick Xenophon Team’s support, the Government cannot rely on the crossbench. This left the casting vote up to Labor in the Senate.

Xenophon says his team will advocate for a free vote on directly legalising same-sex marriage through an act of Parliament.

“This is a matter that the Parliament can and should decide on as a free vote of all members and senators,” he said.

“The Parliament, which could disregard the plebiscite, may face costs exceeding $160 million.

“We believe we could spend this money more effectively.”

Labor Senator Penny Wong told the ABC that Labor still had “deep concerns” over the plebiscite, saying pressure needed to be applied to the Coalition.

“The plebiscite is a political deceit imposed upon the Coalition by Tony Abbott and the conservatives,” she said.

A survey of 5500 LGBTI Australians recently found 85% opposition to a plebiscite.

A national spokesperson for Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG), Sharyn Faulkner, said they were grateful that more and more politicians were seeing a plebiscite for what it really is – a platform for hate and a delaying tactic.

“It’s now up to Labor to join Nick Xenophon and the Greens by declaring they will veto a plebiscite,” she said.

Right now, Bill Shorten holds the key – not to the Lodge but to if and when Australians get to vote on marriage equality.


Turnbull, Abbott, Shorten Agree ‘It’s Time’ For Marriage Equality


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Nerelle Harper

Nerelle is a contributor for QN Magazine and QNEWS Online

QNews, Brisbane Gay, App, Gay App, LGBTI, LGBTI News, Gay Australia

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