AUSTRALIA: PM Smacks Down Same-Sex Marriage Bill

The Australian reports:

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has poured cold water on a Liberal backbencher’s move to present a private member’s bill to allow a conscience vote on same-sex marriage.

“The government’s policy is very clear: we support a plebiscite where all Australians would be given a vote on the matter and that remains our policy,” he told reporters in Paris.

West Australian senator Dean Smith is working on a plan to end the “embarrassment” of the nation and legalise same-sex marriage through a conscience vote in parliament, defying his own government’s policy of a plebiscite on the issue.

Senator Smith, who is gay, said his private member’s bill was well advanced and he intended taking it to the party room for discussion in the near future.

“The bill is important because it will allow the Liberal Party to revisit the issue of marriage once and for all before the next election,” Senator Smith told Seven West’s Sunday Times.