Matt Canavan accuses colleagues of “vaulting arrogance”

Resources Minister Matt Canavan has accused his colleagues of “vaulting arrogance” for trying to shut down an alternative conservative bill on marriage equality.

Coalition MPs have begun fighting over which bill may be used to legislate for marriage equality should a ‘Yes’ result emerge from the postal survey.

Labor have voiced their support for Senator Dean Smith’s private member’s bill, while conservative MP’s have begun working on their own legislation which will reportedly include widespread protections for freedoms of conscience, religion and speech.

Moderate MP’s have warned that the public will not take lightly to demands for anti-discrimination laws to be wound back, especially as there has been a huge turnout for the postal survey.

Senator Canavan has responded arguing that the voices of ‘No’ voters need to be heard in the parliament.

He has accused those opposed to the additional protections of displaying “vaulting Arrogance”, saying it was “reflective of the arrogance and dismissiveness of the Yes side.”

“Whatever the result, millions of Australians are going to vote No. And we don’t live in a tyranny of the majority. Those people deserve to have their views put in our nation’s parliament,” Senator Canavan told The Australian.

Senator Canavan added his voice to a growing number of conservative MPs who are calling for the process of introducing legislation to be slowed down.

“I think we just need to take as much time as necessary to get it right. I have no issue with finalising or attempting to finalise this by the end of the year,” he said. “But we shouldn’t impose an arbitrary deadline on a matter as important as this — particularly as it involves issues around fundamental human rights.” Senator Canavan said.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has repetitively stated that he believes that changes to the marriage act could be completed before Christmas, but many members of his own government are casting doubt on that prediction.

Former Abbott government minister Kevin Andrews has added his voice to the MPs calling for any changes to the marriage laws to to be introduced to a set timeline.

“What we have to ensure in this legislation is that there is adequate protections for freedom of religion and belief.” Andrews told Sky News.

“The Dean Smith bill has virtually no protections for religion and belief in its terms.” Andrews said advocating for the issue to be approached in a “prudent” manner.

“Whatever time it takes, it takes. It’s better to have prudent appropriate legislation rather than something that is rushed through, which is something that we will all regret later.”

OIP Staff


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