Transcript

Doorstop – Mural Hall

Senator the Hon Mathias Cormann
Minister for Finance
Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate
Senator for Western Australia

Transcription: 

PROOF COPY E & OE

Date: 

7/8/2017

Topic(s): 

Same sex marriage

QUESTION: Minister, where is this going to land this afternoon or tomorrow? 

MATHIAS CORMANN: The Government’s commitment remains. We are committed to giving the Australian people a say on whether or not the definition of marriage should be changed before any further votes in the Parliament on this issue. That is the commitment that we took to the last election. That is the commitment that we remain committed to. The meeting this afternoon of the Liberal Party room is taking place because a number of colleagues have asked the Prime Minister to convene such a meeting in order to consider their proposal for this policy to be reconsidered. But the Government’s commitment remains, we want the Australian people to have a say on whether or not the definition of marriage should be changed before this is put to the Parliament again.

QUESTION: And the possibility of a postal plebiscite or some sort of postal vote?

MATHIAS CORMANN: Our commitment is to give the Australian people a say on whether or not the definition of marriage should be changed. We put legislation to the Parliament to give effect to that commitment late last year. The Senate rejected that proposal. Now, part of the consideration is on the best way forward.

QUESTION: Why is the Government going through so much angst and so much damage out there over this issue?

MATHIAS CORMANN: We are committed to giving the Australian people a say. That is the promise we made to the Australian people before the last election. We are committed to keeping faith with the promise that we made. This is an issue with a diversity of strongly held views on both sides of the argument. The best way to resolve this is by giving the Australian people a say through a plebiscite. 

QUESTION: Surely it is in the Government’s best interest to have it resolved once and for all? 

MATHIAS CORMANN:The best way to resolve this issue once and for all, to provide a more permanent resolution to this issue, is by giving the Australian people a say at a plebiscite on whether or not the definition of marriage should be changed. 

QUESTION: And that is an important part of the Coalition agreement as well, correct?

MATHIAS CORMANN: The Coalition Government made a commitment in the lead up to the last election that we would give the Australian people a say on whether or not the definition of marriage should be changed. That is a commitment that we will stick to.

[ENDS]