Politics Trumps People in Plebiscite Failure – Australians Denied a Say on Marriage

Marriage-Alliance-Politics-Trumps-People-Plebiscite-Failure-Australians-Denied-Say.jpgThe people of Australia have been sent a very clear message by the Parliament this week – they cannot be trusted to have a debate and they cannot be trusted to have their say.

And the three parties that intend on blocking the people’s vote on the Marriage Act have all previously declared their public support for a plebiscite.

“Australians should rightly question the state of politics in this country,” Marriage Alliance spokesperson Sophie York said.

“It was not so long ago that a vote of the people had a solid majority of support in the Australian Senate. It is disappointing that many Senators have walked away from their commitment to let the Australian people have their say.”

“As said by the Attorney General – this issue represents a ‘profound social change’. We know that there are passionate supporters on either side of the debate. We know there are millions of Australians who wish the Marriage Act to stay exactly as it is. And we know the only way to get the politics out of this issue is to hand it over to the people.” 

“Marriage Alliance maintains support for a people’s vote on whether to change the Marriage Act,” said Ms York. “We will continue to engage with the community on the consequences of changing the Marriage Act and what that means for freedom of speech and our children’s futures.”

It’s surprising and disappointing that Australia could hold a plebiscite on its national anthem some years ago but now won’t get the chance to gain a national public mandate on marriage.

 Australia and its people deserve better.

“But in terms of a plebiscite — I would rather the people of Australia could make their view clear on  this than leaving this issue to 150 people.” – Bill Shorten, 2013

“If all MPs and senators can’t have a conscience vote then there needs to be a conscious vote of all  Australians through a plebiscite.” – Nick Xenophon, 2015

“If this is not dealt with through a free vote of the parliament, as it should be, then if there is to be a plebiscite it must be at this election and it must be the parliament that owns the plebiscite and drafts the question.” – Richard di Natale, 2015

For media enquires please contact Sophie on sophieyork@marriagealliance.com.au or 1300 001 362

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