Report reveals plans to oust gay Liberal Senator Dean Smith

Western Australian Liberal Senator Dean Smith may be up for a fight for his spot in the Senate, with a report published today that claims the marriage equality advocate is being targeted by conservative powers.

The West Australian have reported that conservative forces within the Liberal party are pushing for Senator Smith to be placed in an unwinnable last place on the Liberal senate ticket at the next federal election.

Senator Smith has been a vocal advocate for the LGBTQIA+ communities during his tenure as a Liberal senator, defying conservative voices in his own party to bring forward a Bill that found support from Labor and the Greens, leading to marriage equality legislation passing through Parliament after the Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey in 2017.

Senator Smith has also served as ambassador of Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG Perth).

The West outline an alleged plan from Christian-dominated branches of the WA Liberals that would see Joondalup Mayor Albert Jacob and policy committee chair Sherry Sufi moved up the ticket behind Michaelia Cash – who is secure in the number 1 position after the resignation of Senator Matias Cormann.

Sufi made headlines in 2016 as the federal Liberal candidate for Fremantle, speaking out against constitutional recognition for First Nations people, and describing marriage equality as a “a perfidious and futile attack on language.”

Then Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull told reporters that he disagreed with the local candidate on both issues.

“I don’t agree with that but this is an issue on which there is a wide range views but my own view is we should recognize our first Australians in our constitution that is, I might say, the view and commitment of the Government,” the Prime Minister said.

After stepping down as the Fremantle candidate, Sufi claimed his campaign was brought down by “cowards” who highlighted his past comments on marriage equality and Indigenous recognition.

OIP Staff

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