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Challenger to Australian PM would still insist on public vote on gay marriage

Joseph McCormick September 14, 2015

The Liberal who is challenging Tony Abbott’s leadership, has said he would still call a public vote on same-sex marriage.

Malcolm Turnbull announced that he would challenge Mr Abbott’s leadership earlier today.

The Liberal PM, who is a strong opponent of same-sex marriage, threatened to sack any ministers who voted for same-sex marriage when it was set to come to a vote last month.

He later moved to avert a showdown with his own MPs over the issue, by proposing a plebiscite (public vote) instead and avoiding a Parliamentary debate.

But despite Mr Abbott having received criticism for his stance on same-sex marriage, it appears that Mr Turnbull holds the same views on a plebiscite.

Souces close to the challenger, told the Star Observer that he would stick with the “party position on a plebiscite on marriage equality”, if he is successful at tonight’s ballot.

Mr Abbott has said he wants to lock in a vote after the next federal election in 2017 – which means same-sex weddings will likely not begin for a number of years, thanks to his political manoeuvring.

However, equality activists aren’t taking the slight lying down – with a campaign launching to send a thousand rainbow-coloured potatoes to the PM.

More: Australia, civil partnership, civil union, equal marriage, Gay, gay weddings, lesbian, lesbian wedding, malcolm turnbull, marriage, marriage equality, same sex weddings, Tony Abbott, Union, wedding

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