Postal vote on gay marriage triggers furore

Senator Penny Wong

Senator Penny Wong

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation has told staff to stop using the phrase "marriage equality" ahead of a vote on whether to extend equal marriage rights to same-sex couples.

Asked about a possible boycott of the postal ballot, the MP told reporters: "There were people who chose not to vote for Donald Trump because they walked away from it, and they got Donald Trump didn't they?"

Justice Kirby said he was hurt the government would put the issue of same-sex marriage to a postal vote. But the Senate in November blocked the plebiscite, which would cost 170 million Australian dollars ($135 million) and promote a divisive public debate.

Mr Chester intends to vote "yes" in the postal plebiscite, however said he would "respect the wishes of the majority when it comes time to vote in the Federal Parliament".

He rejected claims the debate around a plebiscite would be damaging, insisting the government trusted the Australian people to have a respectful debate. The vote, however, would also not be legally binding.

The opposition Labor Party has repeatedly called for a simple vote in Parliament to approve same-sex marriage, which consecutive polls show most Australians support. If you're registered at an address you no longer live at but where you have access to mail (for example, a family member's house), make sure you pick up your voting forms.

DO YOU believe same-sex marriage should be legal in Australia?

Rights advocates see the plebiscite as both a delaying tactic forced by a hard right-wing minority and a strategy to undermine political support.

Penny Wong's electric speech as Abbott calls for 'No' vote
Penny Wong Just Demolished The Plebiscite In A Powerful Speech

Imagine if those who fought for Aboriginal people to get the vote had given up.

When will the postal plebiscite for same sex marriage occur? The postal vote, with an estimated cost of $122 million, will not change the law but simply provide additional guidance about public opinion.

Lateline host Emma Alberici gave the best response, in our opinion, to the "election promise" argument.

Marriage equality activists are launching a High Court bid to head off the ballot, saying it breaches the constitution, and funding the vote exceeds the government's power.

Kildea said without parliamentary legislation to approve the expenditure, there could be questions around whether they had the "statutory authority" to carry it out.

On Friday, the Australian comedian and playwright debuted his latest track - a reworking of Peter Allen's classic track "I Still Call Australia Home" taking aim at the country's same-sex marriage laws and urging everyone to vote in the postal poll.

Sen. Nick Xenophon said his minor party's opposition had not changed since they opposed the plebiscite in the November vote.

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