Liberal Politicians Pledge Support For Marriage Equality

Teresa GambaroThe campaign for marriage equality is finding more Liberal politicians are voicing their support for marriage equality.

Liberal politician Teresa Gambaro (pictured), who previously voted against marriage equality legislation in parliament, announced that she had changed her position.

Ms Gambaro announced her change of heart at a candidates forum last week and later posted a detailed statement on her website.

“This is a highly emotional and personal issue and in my view, marriage should not be anybody’s political play thing. Marriage is not about politics. And sadly it has been used as a political wedge during this campaign. Government has no place in either defining love or telling people who they can love,” said Ms Gambaro.

“I have made this decision because my personal journey in speaking with people touched by this issue communicated to me as I have been door knocking and meeting with people in my electorate. All I can say to everyone is this – who people choose to love is not a decision for government and people should be free to love who they want free of discrimination, bias and prejudice.”

Ms Gambaro, who represents the seat of Brisbane, said she would lobby Liberal Leader Tony Abbott to allow a conscience vote on the issue during the next parliament.

Also voicing his support behind marriage equality is Liberal Candidate Dr Bill Glasson, who is running against Prime Minister Kevin Rudd for the seat of Griffith. Unlike the Prime Minister who recently changed his mind on the topic, Dr Glasson says he is a long time supporter of the cause and he is in favour of a conscience vote on the issue.

“I believe in a conscience vote and I would vote in favour of gay marriage . . . I think it comes down to respect. It should not be a gender-based decision; it should be a principle-based decision,” said Dr Glasson.

Meanwhile Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has ruled out supporting a referendum on marriage equality. Speaking on Triple J current affairs program ‘Hack’ the Prime Minister said that the issue was best decided by a conscience vote in parliament. Mr Rudd said it was disappointing that Opposition Leader Tony Abbott was opposed to allowing members of his party to vote according to their own views.

“In our parliamentary system on matters of this nature the longstanding tradition has been to offer people a conscience vote. We’ve done that. What I am disappointed about though is that the prospect of this passing the parliament is undermined by Abbott refusing a conscience vote for the other side,” said Mr Rudd.
OIP Staff

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