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Australia: Govt announces postal vote on same-sex marriage
08 Agosto 2017, 11:00 | Bibiana Flor
AUSTRALIANS will be asked to take part in a voluntary postal vote on gay marriage in October under a Turnbull Government plan to get the issue off the agenda by the end of the year.
The government confirmed on Tuesday that the Australian Bureau of Statistics - you may remember them from such successful ventures as the #CensusFail - will be in charge of the votes.
Then, the government will proceed with a non-compulsory postal vote.
The Australian public will be able to formally voice their support for same-sex marriage after the announcement a plebiscite will be held on November 25 this year.
He revealed that the original plebiscite would go back to the Senate this week for another vote on a bill, which was originally rejected previous year.
Beginning his rant, Stefanovic said it would come as a surprise to no one that we are "governed by fools" and labelled federal politicians "middle aged suits, oblivious to the cost of childcare or a mortgage" who were "ironically incapable of leadership".
Senator Lambie said she held Malcolm Turnbull to account for failing to pass the original plebiscite, saying it showed "how poor" the government's negotations with the crossbench had been.
However, the legality of a postal vote has been questioned, with the Labor Party and marriage equality groups not convinced that the government has the authority to spend Commonwealth funds on the vote, according to Sky News.
But gay rights advocates are concerned that referendums rarely change the status quo in Australia.
The rebels had only seven votes in the partyroom in their bid for an immediate free parliamentary vote.
Entsch reserved his position at the meeting, leaving open the possibility of crossing the floor at some point.
But same-sex marriage advocates say a plebiscite could lead to an ugly, divisive and unnecessary debate.
" 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".
"As people of faith, we understand that marriage is based on the values of love and commitment and we support civil marriage equality, not despite, but because of our faith and values", the letter reads.
"If that were to fail, the government believes that we have a legal and constitutional way forward to give the Australian people a say on whether or not the definition of marriage should be changed through a non-legislated, voluntary postal plebiscite".
"I refer to this disgusting pamphlet authorised by a former Liberal Minister which falsely claims children of gay couples are more likely to abuse drugs, have sexually transmitted diseases and be unemployed", he said.
"This is ridiculous", Opposition leader Bill Shorten said after the meeting.
Members of Australia's ruling party on Monday blocked efforts to allow a conscience vote in the country's parliament on whether to extend marriage rights to same-sex couples.
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