Should same-sex marriage vote be compulsory or conscience? 233



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It has been reported that this year at the Labor Party national conference in July, acting leader Tanya Pilbersek will call on her party to cease same-sex marriage voting as a conscience vote and instead make it compulsory.

The Sydney Morning Herald has quoted Ms Pilbersek saying, “Do we support legal discrimination against one group in this country? Or do we not?”

Labor’s platform currently supports same-sex marriage but does not make it compulsory for Labor MPs to support it in a parliamentary vote. Ms Pilbersek believes that if there is a time to change it, it is now saying there had been a “significant step forward” in terms of community support for same-sex marriage. A Crosby Textor poll last year found that 72 per cent of those surveyed backed same-sex marriage.

At the Labor Party’s last national conference in 2011, it voted 208 to 184 in support of a conscience vote.

It is quite clear that some people and members of the party believe everyone should have the right to an opinion on this one – and have the right to show their support or their lack of support for a bill. And shouldn’t that be the case? Should it come down to majority rather than a blanket rule saying if you’re in this party, you will vote like this on something so personal?

It’s a very tough position and there are avid supporters that will want this rule to be enforced, however there’s others who aren’t so sure about it and therefore is it respectful to everyone to keep it a conscience vote?

Share your thoughts in the comments below… Should it be a compulsory or conscience vote for parties? 

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  1. ALL voting on this issue should be a conscience vote, each of those MP’S was elected by his or her electorate to represent their views. Each MP should consult his or her electorate before they vote. I personally can see nothing wrong with gay marriage, the sky will not fall in if we allow it

    10 REPLY
    • I agree Libbi Elliot, I thought the MP’s voted with the wishes of their electorate views in mind (as opposed to their own views!). I also think there should be equal rights for all….:-)

    • Libby a conscience vote will be their own opinion whereas a compulsory vote would mean they had to isten to their electorate.

    • Margaret the Abbott Government will not allow a conscience vote they have to vote the party line..which is no gay marriage, it won’t be compulsory voting either because MP’S have the right not to vote on any issue they can however cross the floor and vote with the opposition

    • Complete rubbish Libbi. Stay out of our wombs and our bedrooms. None of anyone’s business and is driven by the infernal and psychotic religious control. What is the date again 2015, oh no 1430, silly me. Open and transparent thank you! Such naivety is astounding. Senators here determine that poor women overseas get impregnated as often as possible by demanding the ‘contraceptive’ component of Foreign Aid be removed. Horse trading over ‘souls for the jesus bug’ How can you counsel such a dreadful thing. Empowering men to control womb content, honestly disgusts me.

    • For many MPs, the majority of their constituents do want them to vote in same sex marriage. Polls keep showing this.

    • Excuse me Robina lmao I know this may be a shock to you but I have no interest in your womb.. I believe MP’S should reflect what their electorates want without having to toe the party line and from I have read the majority of Australians support gay marriage..I certainly do.. thanks for the laugh on the womb 🙂

  2. Whatever happens, they should be voting for what the people want, and the country is now clearly in favour of marriage equality.

    8 REPLY
    • Says who Jan? Let’s have a referendum on the issue and see what the country wants. It is my view, that even if Australia voted no, this vocal minority wouldn’t stop the campaigning. It’s a form of bullying to get what a minority want and I am sick of it.

    • Maria
      Says the vast number of surveys that have been done. Says the millions of people who post online and write letters to newspapers etc. And says the concensus from the last census that was done in Australia.

    • Bullying? you have the nerve to call people asking for the basic human right to marry the person they love… bullying Marie? There have been many surveys done on this subject in recent times and they demonstrate that 78-82 % of Ausralians are in favour of, or have no objection to, same sex marriage. Members of parliament are supposed to vote along the lines of what their constituents want, not their own personal views.

    • Seems to be the way lately Maria…… Noisy minorities get their way. Democracy is dying.
      In this case it’s perfectly obvious that most of the electorate are happy for the legislation to be passed, as is with euthanasia. Unfortunately, ‘ligion & PC get in the way.

    • 72% – 80% of who. I can assure you that this is not the case. Very biased reporting there. A referendum would be needed as the politicians should not decide for the rest of the nation.

    • One of those surveys was done by the LNP’s own pollsters. And Bronwen, noisy minorites? That is what you have to be if you are denied your RIGHTS as a human being. How smug you sound just because you happen to have been born fitting into a ‘majority’. It does not make your rights anymore important than those of the minority. LGBT people are not asking for special priviledges, just the same equality as everyone else. And if we have to make noise to do that, then so be it. Do you enjoy your rights as a woman to vote? Well ‘noisy minorities’ got you those rights!!!

  3. There should be no such thing as a compulsory vote for or against on any issue. On one such as this especially so.

  4. Who cares. Let them be united. Marriage is for a man and a woman.

    7 REPLY
    • Once the law is passed, it will become a non-issue. It will just be a marriage. Those opposed are on the wrong side of history, like those who opposed voting for women or abolition of slavery.

    • And marriage used to be a way of joining kingdoms once and many many other things. Marriage as a custom predates Christianity and there is clear evidence of same sex marriage in ancient Greek and Roman texts for example. And what do you mean by ‘united’ Allan. I want full and equal rights with every other Australian citizen.

    • Call it a partnership and be done with-it…should the legalities apply, why are you making it so difficult for ‘normal’ people to go with the flow?

    • Why should straight people be able to marry and LGBT are supposed to be happy with a ‘partnership’? I refuse to be a second class citizen and I will not ask her to “partnership me”.

    • I agree, I have no problem with a same sex relationship or some form of acknowledgement, but it is not marriage! Check the definition of marriage in any dictionary, the union between a man & a woman.

  5. Voting that follows the Party line, allows these politicians to get away with not doing as their electorates want. It is a cowardly act.

  6. I dont care .nor my place to judge. .. but personally dont think God will recognise it as a unity. Why did he make a man and woman with different credintials.

    16 REPLY
    • Humans evolved from great Apes.. evolution made us and man created God. You really need to be better educated. If that is the best you have to base your argument have no argument at all.

    • You know what leanna i may not be as educated as you once more i dont give two hoots about what you believe or think about our existance either.. if you want to be an ape so be it… go swing from a tree. Darwin was wrong too. I choose to believe in a supreme power i believe that our generics are too complex to just evolve from ape shit. I further believe that no amount of education or science will ever disclose the true meaning of our existance .why where how or when. I further dont give a shit what you believe or think about me either.

    • Why aren’t monkeys still changing into humans if this theory is correct ??? Just wondering.

    • Who cares if YOUR God doesnt recognise it as a union? When are people goingf to get it through their heads that MARRIAGE is a legal convention provided by the government of a country. A church just provides a wedding.

    • If a couple, same sex or not, believe in God then let them follow their beliefs but don’t force those beliefs on those who don’t.

    • marriage is an agreement nothing more nothing less,,, one does not need a contract or a wedding certificate these days to sleep or live with any one or anything.. a blow up dolly or a dildo all freedom to do..

    • If they want the formality of a marriage then let them have it. It still won’t force any church to marry them if it doesn’t want to – although I’m sure they will find sympathetic ones who will.

    • I agree if they want an excuse to party and have witnesses to watch them sign a “contract of commitment”. No one can stop them not even the government. It the same as a work place commitment contract… just a written contract..

    • The idea of marriage these days is not as favoured as it used to be. People live together happily or unhappily . Dont know why so much crap going on over a bloody ceromony that doesnt really matter in the end… its the same as the immunisation debate…your choice not government.

    • For petes sake Rosemary and Dianne are both of you totally unable to understand. Marriage is a LEGAL right. No one is asking, or would want, to be married in a church that didnt want them. A church provides WEDDING, the papers still have to be registered in LAW.When you have a celebrant or go to the registry office that is still a MARRIAGE. And that conveys many legal and social benefits which are recognised world wide. Currently, if my partner was ill I would have to show written documents to the hospital to make decisions on her behalf. Yet a straight person could walk in and say “that is my wife/husband” and everyone recogniezes and honours that bond. And your comments about dildos and blow up dolls are disgusting and demeaning and nothing to do with the subject.

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