Ex-British PM David Cameron: Australia should legislate for same-sex marriage soon
The British Prime Minister who introduced same-sex marriage has called on Australia’s government to legislate for same-sex marriage “soon”, following the country’s poll.
David Cameron was a passionate supporter of marriage equality while British PM, introducing the measure in 2013.
He famously declared at Conservative Party conference: “I don’t support gay marriage despite being a Conservative. I support gay marriage because I’m a Conservative.”
The remarks were paraphrased by Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, also a conservative supporter of equal marriage, during the country’s postal survey.
David Cameron told PinkNews: “Marriage should be there for everyone, regardless of their sexuality.
“I’m incredibly proud of all we did to legislate for that and it is now great to see other countries, like Australia, looking to do the same.
“The vote in Australia was decisive; I have every confidence that the Australian government will now legislate so that equal marriage will be available in Australia soon, making a real and positive difference to thousands of lives, just as it has done here.”
Mr Cameron wrote on Twitter: “I’m incredibly proud of legalising Same Sex Marriage in the UK & delighted that other countries are looking to do the same. G’day Australia!”
I’m incredibly proud of legalising Same Sex Marriage in the UK & delighted that other countries are looking to do the same. G’day Australia! https://t.co/Beg9poCc1T
— David Cameron (@David_Cameron) November 15, 2017
Earlier today current British PM Theresa May called on the Australian government to act quickly to implement the change to marriage laws.
Asked if she welcomed the vote’s result, Mrs May told parliament: “I’m very happy to join my honourable friend.
“I am as proud as he and many others were when we passed the legislation here in this house, and made possible same sex marriage here in the United Kingdom and I hope that the Australian government will take that vote and act on it very soon.”
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn also celebrated the results of the Australian vote.
I am delighted that Australians have voted for #MarriageEquality, a great victory for equality and human rights. I hope the Australian Parliament will make it law.
— Jeremy Corbyn (@jeremycorbyn) November 15, 2017
61.6% of Australians voted Yes when asked whether they wanted to introduce same-sex marriage.
Almost 13 million citizens (79.5%) took part in the vote, with the country now expected to become the 25th country in the world to introduce marriage for same-sex couples.
12,727,920 people responded to the survey with a response rate of 79%, which Mr Kalisch said was an “oustanding” turnout.
Yes responses represented 61.6% of responses with 38.4% voting No.
Higher turnout with older participants and lower with younger participants, but “not markedly so”.
The No campaign conceded defeat, having previously said it would settle for a result over 40 percent, something they ultimately failed to achieve.
It is now believed same-sex marriage could be law by Christmas.
Senator Janet Rice, draped in a rainbow scarf, asked the government: “Can loving couples, regardless of their gender or sexuality, be assured that they will be able to marry, and that we will be able to hear wedding bells, by Christmas?”
Speaking on behalf of Prime Minister Malcolm Tunrbull, Senator George Brandis QC announced: “I am not in a position to tell you the date of commencement of the amendments to the Marriage Act should the parliament pass them.
“Though I would like to see the amending act proclaimed as soon as possible and I hope that will be before Christmas, and I expect it will be.”
AG George Brandis: I'm not in a position to confirm a date for commencement but I expect the amending act to proclaimed before Christmas pic.twitter.com/7R2xBTTeMS
— Sky News Australia (@SkyNewsAust) November 15, 2017
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Mr Turnbull said Australians “voted yes for fairness, they voted yes for commitment, they voted yes for love”.
He added “now it is up to us – here in the Parliament of Australia… that must be our commitment.”