MPs have a few different ideas on what happens if the postal vote is cancelled

Liberal MPs have a few different ideas on what might happen if the High Court rules the postal survey on marriage is invalid.

Senator Ian McDonald has told Sky News that there is no way the government would move to having a free vote in parliament on the issue, and it was essential that the coalition kept their election promise to allow everyone to have a say on the issue.

“We went to the election with a promise.” Senator McDonald said. “One of the things people don;t like about politicians is they make promises before the election and then change it. I’ve always be firm, and I think most of my party is the same, we made a promise that we’d have a plebiscite and we’re going to do it.”

Senator McDonald said if the current plan of holding a postal survey was unable to go ahead he hoped there would be some other way to gauge the opinion of the Australian public.

“That’s what we promised, I hope that is what we are going to do.” Senator McDonald said.

Western Australian MP Ian Goodenough has told ABC News Breakfast that he’s confident that High Court will rule in the government’s favour based on the legal advice they have received, but there is no way the issue will progress without a plebiscite being held.

“My position in the party room would be to take it to the same policy that we took to the election, and that a full plebiscite [is] to be held before proceeding with any private member’s bill … we took it to the election as an election commitment so we’re eager to abide by that.” Goodenough said.

Yesterday Liberal MP Craig Kelly said he believed the situation had changed, and it would now be easier for the government to get the failed plebiscite legislation throught the senate.

Kelly told Fairfax Media that he believes the other party’s support for a plebiscite has changed now that they’ve got involved in active campaigning for the Yes vote through the postal survey process.

Speaking to The Sydney Morning Herald Kelly said politicians opposed to the plebiscite would now be obligated to support the government’s original plan.

“We’ve gone so far down the track of having a vote, it now generally seems to be accepted,” Kelly said. “The crossbench senators that previously said ‘no’ … I think now that all this water’s under the bridge, I think there could be an obligation on them to change their tune.”

The High Court is currently listening to two challenges to the government’s marriage postal survey plan that claim the process employed by the Turnbull government is constitutionally invalid. A decision could be reached as early as this afternoon on the future of the postal survey.

OIP Staff

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