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Alien Son

Australia votes YES for same sex marriage

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The results of Australia's voluntary postal survey on same sex marriage have just been announced by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

There was an amazing turnout - 79.5% of eligible voters responded.

The vote was 61.6% YES, 38.4% NO, with 0.2% unclear.

Of our total 150 federal electoral districts, 133 voted YES; 17 voted NO. Of the 17 NO, 12 were in New South Wales, 3 in Queensland and 2 in Victoria.

Every state and territory voted YES, with the result in all states except New South Wales more than 60% in favour. In NSW the figure was 58%.

Detailed figures (including by electorate and age group) are available at http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-11-15/same-sex-marriage-results-ssm/9145636.

Now all we need is for our politicians to get on and do what they should have done in the first place - pass the law in parliament, with no more obfuscation, no more delaying tactics, and no more dishonest campaigning.

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2 hours ago, Alien Son said:

 

Now all we need is for our politicians to get on and do what they should have done in the first place - pass the law in parliament, with no more obfuscation, no more delaying tactics, and no more dishonest campaigning.

Yeah. Piece of cake, right? :) Congrats!

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This is great news. I've been in a happy mood all day.

To put things into perpective, more people voted Yes than voted for the winning party at last year's federal election...

 

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22 hours ago, Alien Son said:

Now all we need is for our politicians to get on and do what they should have done in the first place - pass the law in parliament, with no more obfuscation, no more delaying tactics, and no more dishonest campaigning.

How soon do you think it will be submitted to Parliament? Does the vote require just 50% + 1 vote to pass? What are the chances of it passing?

Colin  :icon_geek:

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1 hour ago, colinian said:

How soon do you think it will be submitted to Parliament? Does the vote require just 50% + 1 vote to pass? What are the chances of it passing?

Colin  :icon_geek:

Already introduced, late in the afternoon after the result of the ballot was announced. Without going into the history of the whole sorry mess, suffice to say that several MPs already had a private member's bill ready; all they had to do was introduce it and get it debated. That process started in the senate yesterday afternoon.

Both major parties (and most of the minor ones, I think) have given their members a conscience vote, which means they can vote however they wish. The Australian Broadcasting Corporation asked every member of the house of representatives and every senator how they would vote on the legislation if it was introduced. The ABC published the figures the day before the result of the ballot was announced. They seem to have removed the article from their website, so I can't provide a link; however, a clear majority of MPs said they would vote to pass the legislation. I can't remember the figures, but I think it was around 60% yes, 40% no (pretty much in line with the result of the marriage survey), with some saying they would wait for the result of the marriage survey before deciding. A couple of diehards said they would vote no whatever the result of the survey. I think only two MPs did not respond to the ABC's question.

For the bill to pass it simply needs a majority in both houses of parliament to vote in favour of it. There will be debate in both houses (it has yet to be introduced in the house of reps), and the far right of the Liberal Party will probably do their best to scuttle it, but they don't have the numbers. The bill as introduced yesterday might end up altered a little, but I don't see much happening because those who oppose it just don't have the support. They may succeed in delaying the passing of the bill, but I think that's the best (from their point of view) that they will be able to achieve. Everyone else is fed up with their antics, and they just want to get the thing done -- as does the general public.

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Thanks for the link to the voting survey, Graeme. I wasn't able to find it again. This time I'll save the link!

My memory of the article wasn't very accurate, either. Sigh. The number of MPs who said they would vote in favour was much higher than I said above, and the number who didn't respond to the ABC was also higher.

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I love the concept of a Conscience Vote.  If only our Congress had the same provision.  But I doubt any lobby or moneyed interest would ever release a congressman.  Plus I highly doubt any of them have a conscience...

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4 hours ago, Graeme said:

A reflection piece on what happened last Wednesday: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-11-18/how-same-sex-marriage-fight-was-different-for-veteran-activists/9159080

My favourite quote:

 

 

I read this just a few minutes ago. It's quite moving.

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All you will have to do now is have a campaign to stop establishments charging more for a gay marriage than they do for a straight marriage. This has happened over here recently. Went to a wedding in August and the brides mother told me that the £15K they had forked out for the wedding had left them somewhat financially strapped. I was surprised because I had been there a few weeks earlier for the wedding of a gay couple I know, and they had basically the same wedding package but were charged £22K.

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When Doug and I decided to file as California Registered Domestic Partners we had to wait until I turned 18; Doug was already 18. His birthday is September 23rd, mine is November 21st — yes, that's today — wow, I just realized that was exactly 10 years ago today! We had our form filled out and a check for $33.00 (my check #14102) sealed in a stamped envelope and that morning of Wednesday, November 21, 2007 (the day before Thanksgiving) we went to the post office and sent the envelope by registered mail with a return receipt request. We got our Certificate of Registered Domestic Partnership back from Debra Bowen, Secretary of State of the State of California, dated Tuesday, November 27, 2007. After the United States Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage, we got married on Tuesday, July 23, 2013, certified by the Deputy Commissioner of Civil Marriages of Contra Costa County, California.

It probably seems like it's taking a long time to be approved in Australia, but it looks like it's about to happen. Congratulations to our Aussie friends!

Colin  :icon_geek:

 

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Thanks, Colin. Even though it's not applicable to me (my wife and I have just celebrated our 27th wedding anniversary), I'm really happy that not only will other guys and girls get to marry their partners soon, but the survey made it abundantly clear that majority of Australians have their back. It's that latter point that made me so happy that day.

Thanks for sharing yours and Dougs story, too. It's a special time... :icon1:

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Birthday's come and go as regularly as clockwork.  For so many, marriages are more transitory.  I'm sure that won't be the case with you and Doug.  For you two, your anniversaries will be just as regular and uninterrupted as your birthdays.  Congratulations.

 

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Today in the Senate our attorney-general, George Brandis, made a speech during debate on the same sex marriage bill. I'm no fan of George (in fact, during most of the life of the current government I've regarded him as a real dill), but this speech is a gem. I only hope he really meant it. There's an edited version of it here: http://www.theage.com.au/federal-politics/political-opinion/attorneygeneral-george-brandis-powerful-samesex-marriage-speech-in-full-20171128-gzu669.html.

I think this is the highlight:

"I want to reflect for a moment on the message this will send, in particular, to young gay people: to the boy or girl who senses a difference from their friends, which they find difficult to understand and impossible to deal with. In his first speech in the Parliament, my friend Tim Wilson spoke movingly of his own experience of confronting that knowledge, as a tormenting fear "that took an energetic 12-year-old and hollowed his confidence to eventually doubt his legitimate place in the world". How many hundreds of thousands of young Australians have known that fear? How many have lived with it, silently and alone? How many have failed to come to terms with it and been overborne by it? By passing this bill, we are saying to those vulnerable young people:  there is nothing wrong with you. You are not unusual.  You are not abnormal.  You are just you.  There is nothing to be embarrassed about. There is nothing to be ashamed of. There is nothing to hide. You are a normal person and, like every other normal person, you have a need to love. How you love is how God made you. Whom you love is for you to decide and others to respect."

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Excellent. Fantastic. Some U.S. politicians should be required to read the entire statement. And yes, I'm thinking of Alabama.

Colin  :icon_geek:

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The legislation has been passed by the Senate. It will now go to the House. All attempted amendments to allow increased religious and conscientious objections were rejected by the Senate. I don't expect the House to do anything different. 

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The house of representatives passed the legislation today. All amendments were defeated, and only four MHRs voted against the bill.

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Congratulations, Australia!  It is done!

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YES! Congrats!

Colin  :icon_geek: 

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Thanks guys. After 45 years together, my companion and I have been wondering if either of us would make it to our marriage.

Despite my illness, now recovered, it seems likely that we might just make it. Of course both of us are secular atheists so the costs involved will be only what the registry office charges us.

I don't think we would even consider marriage if it cost more than $100. Our affinity for each other has remained constant. In fact you could say we're in love. Will we get married? I've done the proposing thing, (The cat yawned. I should have guessed something was up,) but the "Yes" I was expecting was replaced with, "Are you serious?" So, I guess I'll have to convince him with a spreadsheet of how much we'll be entitled to as an old married couple. 

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Thanks Cole.  It's good to be back.

I'd hoped to do some writing, but I got somewhat distracted with fighting for equality.

Maybe I'll get inspired now that we only have to worry about keeping what we should always have had. 

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