Sunday Herald Sun - - News -

SUP­PORT for same-sex mar­riage dropped by more than one mil­lion votes after the High Court dis­missed a chal­lenge to the postal vote, ac­cord­ing to the No cam­paign.

A poll of 4000 vot­ers taken be­fore the court rul­ing found 65 per cent in favour and 35 per cent against when forced to make a de­ci­sion.

A se­cond poll taken in the 10 days since the chal­lenge was dis­missed recorded a 7 per cent swing away from the Yes vote — equiv­a­lent to more than one mil­lion votes.

A spokesman for the No cam­paign said the num­bers were mov­ing now that “Aus­tralians were pre­sented with al­ter­na­tive ar­gu­ment”.

The Sun­day Herald Sun can also re­veal John Howard (left) has ramped up his cam­paign against same-sex mar­riage, ac­cus­ing se­nior con­ser­va­tives in­clud­ing Scott Mor­ri­son, Peter Dut­ton and Mathias Cor­mann, of “run­ning dead” on the is­sue.

Se­nior Lib­eral sources said the for­mer prime min­is­ter is call­ing con­ser­va­tive mem­bers of the Turn­bull Gov­ern­ment to lobby them.

“Howard wants the se­nior guys to be more vo­cal and not leave it up to the ju­nior con­ser­va­tives,” one Lib­eral MP said. But Mr Howard’s in­ter­ven­tion has an­gered mod­er­ates who claim he is try­ing to “com­pli­cate” the is­sue and “scare vot­ers”.

Last week, Mr Howard ac­cused the gov­ern­ment of “wash­ing its hands of any re­spon­si­bil­ity” to pro­tect re­li­gious free­doms, if the sur­vey come back with a ma­jor­ity Yes vote. Re­sults from the postal sur­vey are ex­pected on Novem­ber 15.

Miss Uni­verse Australia Olivia Rogers says she feels far health­ier now (at right) than when she was ‘stick thin’ as a work­ing model (be­low). Pic­ture: TIM SWAL­LOW

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