Entsch wants same-sex vote

Liberal National MP Warren Entsch has presented Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull with a proposition for a fresh parliamentary vote on same-sex marriage.

Under the new plan, Mr Entsch wants politicians to vote on amending the Marriage Act before the next election, but only ratify the outcome if it is supported by a “Yes” vote in a plebiscite that followed.

The radical plan is reportedly on Mr Turnbull’s desk, according to the ABC.

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The Coalition’s current stance on same-sex marriage is that it would go to a plebiscite after the next election.

However, the deal struck when Tony Abbott was Prime Minister is loose on detail.

Mr Turnbull was quizzed this week on whether a plebiscite after the next election would be binding.

He indicated it would, however there had been no formal announcement on that point, or other matters to do with the plebiscite the Abbott government proposed.

Mr Entsch told ABC’s AM program he is urging the PM to back the new plan.

“I have said to him that I think we need to be looking at progressing this issue,” Mr Entsch said.

tony abbott

Abbott’s controversial and marathon Coalition party room meeting set out the govt’s current stance. Photo: Getty

The plan would be brought before the Liberal and Coalition party rooms and then to Cabinet for a final call.

Mr Entsch claims this plan gave voters better control over the same-sex issue.

“They vote ‘Yes’, there is no further process, there is no further debate in the Parliament,” he said.

“Generally a plebiscite was not generally binding, in this case it would be binding and it would become law.”

Attorney-General George Brandis was consulting Mr Entsch on the plan.

Conservative Liberal senator Eric Abetz told ABC radio on Thursday morning the plan was “a bit of a thought bubble and an ambush to boot”.

But there were concerns it could run foul of the constitution.

“As far as I know there has never been a public vote of the kind that’s being talked about,” Australian Marriage Equality spokesman Rodney Croome told AM.

“I have certainly spoken to legal and constitutional experts who have expressed some concerns about whether it’s even possible for the current Parliament to effectively bind the next Parliament by handing over legislative power to the people.”

– with ABC

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