Australia edges closer to same-sex marriage vote

Lester Mason
December 7, 2017

Not all speeches backed gay marriage, however.

On Monday, the debate on the Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Bill 2017 kicked off in the House of Representatives.

More than 100 MPs spoke on the legislation after it was tabled in the House of Representatives.

Media captionWill you marry me?

The Senate passed the same legislation last week 43 votes to 12.

The bill is now law, pending royal assent from the Governor-General, which is a ceremonial process. Several amendments being proposed would expand those exemptions, but Dutton and other lawmakers expect all amendments would be rejected.

HINKLER MP Keith Pitt has vowed to support all amendments to the same-sex marriage Bill as he believes it's critical that no voters have their views protected.

Many same-sex marriage supporters have travelled to Canberra to witness the outcome in the lower house.

"I'll be supporting the proposed amendments for religious freedoms when they are introduced", he said.

"We must not fail to recognize that there is honest, heartfelt anxiety about the bill's impact on religious freedom", Turnbull said.

Further debate on amendments delayed the vote until almost 6pm tonight.

A nonbinding postal survey found that 62 percent of Australian respondents wanted gay marriage to be legal.

While marriage equality could become law this week, state marriage registries have said they could not proceed with weddings until January due to paperwork. Nearly 80 percent of Australia's registered voters took part in the two-month survey.

Australia's Parliament would legalize gay marriage this week despite some lawmakers' concerns about whether Australian cake makers should have to cater for same-sex weddings, a leading opponent of marriage equality said on Wednesday.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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