Turnbull accuses Shorten of trickery over marriage bill amendments

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull says he is supportive of some amendments being made to the marriage bill when it is debated in the House of Representatives.

The bill passed the senate yesterday, but will now have to wait until the House of Representatives meet next week before being debated further.

Speaking to the media this morning the Prime Minister said it was disappointing that the Labor party had allowed their senators to have a conscience vote on the bill but not on the amendments to the bill, accusing Opposition leader Bill Shorten of trickery.

“It’s a free vote, members are entitled from our side to move and vote on amendments, and the bill itself, as they see fit.

“But, Shorten said that Labor was going to have a free vote too, didn’t he. But then he didn’t, once again Tricky Bill – slipping and sliding.

“So Labor members have a free vote on the bill apparently, but not on the amendments, what a sort of of slippery logic, can you imagine anything more slippery than that?” Turnbull said.

The Prime Minister said the reason none of the amendments were successful in the senate was because Labor had not allowed their senators a conscience vote.

Labor has previously stated that none of their Senator’s requested a free vote on the amendments.

The Prime Minister said he would have liked to have seen all members of parliament working together address the concerns raised about the marriage bill.

“That would have been parliament working at its best.” Turnbull said, “But Shorten’s inability to rise to the occasion and allow his members a free vote is why none of those amendments got up in the senate.”

Treasurer Scott Morrison said Australian who have religion in their lives could not trust the leader of the opposition.

“People of faith in this country can have no faith in Bill Shorten when it comes to religious protections” Morrison said.

“What the Labor party have done on this issue is an insult to every person of faith and religion in this country, and they should be ashamed of themselves.”

Morrison highlighted that nine of the top ten seats that voted no in the marriage postal survey were held by Labor members.

“What are those members going to say to their people in those electorates?  I just think its a disgrace.” Morrison said.

Earlier Alex Greenwich from Australian Marriage Equality said the senate had sent a very clear message about the marriage bill and suggested that members of the House of Representatives should take note.

Greenwich told the Sydney Morning Herald that the senate had sent “a clear message” and the lower house should not “spoil the wedding”.

OIP Staff


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