Australian Greens Leader Bob Brown says the Greens will work hard with the next government to get a conscience vote on Greens legislation to remove discrimination against same-sex couples in Australian marriage laws.
Speaking in Hobart, Senator Brown called on both Julia Gillard and Tony Abbott to agree to a conscience vote in the next 12 months in both houses of Parliament.
"If that happened, I reckon the law would change. That would bring us up with other countries like Mexico, Argentina, Canada and South Africa," Senator Brown said.
The Rudd government should drop its unpopular, discriminatory and old-fashioned opposition to same-sex marriage when it wipes all other discrimination on the basis of sexuality from the statutes later this year, Greens Leader Senator Bob Brown said today.
The Rudd government should not interfere with the ACT's civil unions bill, as reported on page 3 ofThe Australian, Greens Leader Bob Brown said today
"Unlike Chief Minister Jon Stanhope who campaigned, and was elected, on the issue of civil unions, the Rudd government has no mandate to interfere with them," Senator Brown said.
"I wholeheartedly support the ACT civil union legislation. The Rudd government should remove all discrimination on the basis of sexuality under the law, including marriage."
A bill lifting MPs' superannuation top-ups form 9% to 15% will bolt through the Senate.
After prayers at 12.30pm, the bill was exempted from the (cut-off) rule requiring at least 6 weeks delay between first and second reading to give time for proper public scrutiny and review.
The Greens opposed the exemption.
Debate on the bill is due to resume later today. The Greens oppose the bill which overturns Prime Minister Howard's pre-election commitment to the 9% top-up.
Greens Leader Bob Brown has notified the Senate of a bill to remove the Prime Minister's power to override Australian Capital Territory laws.
Prompted by Mr Howard's decision to override the ACT's Civil Unions Act, Senator Brown said that the half million people of the ACT should have their elected Legislative Assembly free of high-handed Prime Ministerial interference.
Prime Minister John Howard must allow a conscience vote on the Greens' motion to disallow the regulation which would remove the ACT's civil union legislation from the statute books, Greens Leader Bob Brown said today.
"The Prime Minister should put this matter to a conscience vote," Senator Brown said.
"Unlike Chief Minister Jon Stanhope who campaigned, and was elected, on the issue of civil unions, John Howard has no mandate to unilaterally abolish them."