Australians support same-sex marriage in survey, paving way for legislation

Australians support same-sex marriage in survey, paving way for legislation

A cross-party group of senators - led by Liberal Dean Smith and supported by senior Labour figure Penny Wong, amongst others - will introduce a private bill to the upper house today afternoon.

Nearly two-thirds of Australians voted in favor of legalizing same-sex marriage, according to results of a nationwide voluntary survey released Wednesday by the Australian Bureau of Statistics. "I just really do need to visit Australia now", he quipped.

Supporters of the same-sex marriage "Yes" vote gather to celebrate the announcement in a Sydney park on November 15, 2017.

But even ahead of the release of the results, conservative politicians inside the Australian parliament were preparing for a fight over how marriage equality would be legalized. If you're anxious about religious freedom, and freedom of speech, vote no.

"It is unequivocal, it is overwhelming".

"They (Australians) have spoken in their millions and they have voted overwhelmingly yes for marriage equality", Turnbull told reporters in Canberra.

A marriage equality bill was introduced into parliament later on Wednesday.

Dustin Lance Black, who is married to Tom Daley, wrote: "Thank you Australia".

Close to four fifths of eligible voters cast their ballots, with almost eight million people voting in favour of the historic change. The committee called on Australia to legislate for marriage equality regardless of the survey's outcome.

Nick Economou, a political scientist at Monash University, said Turnbull "should feel emboldened by the result and this is the sort of thing he has been looking for to show some assertive leadership".

Catholic Archbishop of Sydney Anthony Fisher said he was "deeply disappointed that the likely result will be legislation to further deconstruct marriage and family in Australia".

Turnbull and the opposition Labor Party have backed a simpler draft bill that legalises gay marriage while allowing religious institutions to refuse to Wednesday same-sex couples if they oppose the practice.

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