RAIN­BOW CON­NEC­TION

Ter­ri­tory pol­lies’ over­whelm­ing push for same sex mar­riage law change

Sunday Territorian - - FRONT PAGE - HAY­LEY SORENSEN

“The best thing you can do is go out and vote, and vote yes” CLP SEN­A­TOR NIGEL SCULLION

ONLY two Ter­ri­tory politicians say they will vote no in the same-sex mar­riage postal sur­vey.

Terry Mills and Gerry Wood told the NT News they would not sup­port the push.

The over­whelm­ing ma­jor­ity of our po­lit­i­cal lead­ers said they would vote yes.

Op­po­si­tion Leader Gary Hig­gins de­clined through his me­dia ad­viser to make his vote pub­lic, de­spite pre­vi­ously stat­ing his sup­port for same-sex mar­riage. Speak­ing to Mix

104.9’ s Katie Woolf in Au­gust, Mr Hig­gins said he had a “very firm view” in favour of same sex mar­riage.

“Hav­ing a gay son, it should be ob­vi­ous to peo­ple which way I’d ac­tu­ally go,” he said.

Deputy Op­po­si­tion Leader Lia Finoc­chiaro, who is on ma­ter­nity leave, also de­clined through the ad­viser.

All four of the NT’s fed­eral politicians – La­bor mem­bers Malarndirri McCarthy, War­ren Snow­don and Luke Gosling and CLP Sen­a­tor Nigel Scullion – came out in sup­port of a yes vote this week. At a func­tion in Can­berra, Mr Scullion said there was “no two sorts of equal­ity”.

“The best thing you can do is go out and vote and vote yes,” he said.

Mr Mills said he sup­ported same-sex cou­ples to have the same rights as het­ero­sex­ual cou­ples, but op­posed the push to change the Mar­riage Act.

“De­gen­der­ing the in­sti­tu­tion of mar­riage makes lit­tle ma­te­rial dif­fer­ence to same sex cou­ples but a big dif­fer­ence for our so­ci­ety,” he said.

A hand­ful of other mem­bers, in­clud­ing La­bor’s Lawrence Costa, de­clined to make their votes pub­lic.

Same-sex mar­riage en­joys strong sup­port in the Ter­ri­tory. Al­most three in four re­spon­dents to an NT News poll ear­lier this year said they sup­ported the rights of ho­mo­sex­ual cou­ples to marry.

Sur­vey forms be­gan ar­riv­ing in NT mail­boxes late last week.

A re­sult is ex­pected Novem­ber 15, which will be fol­lowed by a vote in Par­lia­ment.

GERRY WOOD TERRY MILLS NATASHA FYLES WAR­REN SNOW­DON NI­COLE MANI­SON MICHAEL GUN­NER

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