Opposition leader Bill Shorten has officially put forward a bill for marriage equality.
The member for Sydney, Tanya Pliberseck, seconded the motion.
The Marriage Equality Amendment Bill 2016 aims to render the plebiscite, put forward by the Australian Coalition Government, useless.
The plebiscite has been questioned by many, asking whether the financial cost as well as the cost to the LGBTQIA+ community who may be targeted to get people to vote against the legalisation of marriage equality.
The Opposition Leader said, “(It) risks providing a platform for prejudice and a megaphone for hate speech.”
Marriage Equality was a hot topic in the 2016 Federal Election, with Mr. Shorten promising the marriage equality was a top priority.
He said, according to the Sydney Morning Herald, “The first piece of legislation I introduce into the 45th Parliament will be a bill to amend the marriage act, a simple change. The words “a man and a woman” are replaced with “two people”, no $160 million plebiscite, no hurtful, hateful government-sponsored advertising campaign for us.”
Labor was not the only group to put forward this bill; the Deputy Leader of the Greens, Adam Bandt, also put a cross-bench bill forward. The bill is co-sponsored by independents Andrew Wilkie and Cathy McGowan.
Mr. Bandt called for a unification of the two bills, “If we all work together wedding bells could be sounding before Christmas this year.”
According to The Mercury, Mr. Wilkie said, “In the circumstances there’s no doubt the best way forward is a non-aligned Bill reflecting the broad, cross-party interest in marriage equality. Hopefully wiser heads in the ALP understand this and are prepared to join with us to progress this important matter.”
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Originally published here