MPs call for re­spect in de­bate

The Sunday Times - - NEWS - JOE SPAGNOLO

LIB­ER­ALS Dean Smith and An­drew Hastie are on op­po­site sides of the same-sex marriage fight, but yes­ter­day they agreed on one thing: all Aus­tralians should be treated with “de­cency and re­spect” dur­ing this tor­rid de­bate.

Can­ning MHR An­drew Hastie, who wrote in The Sun­day Times last week why he will vote “No” to pro­posed new same-sex-marriage laws, said: “It’s true I’ve re­ceived some nasty stuff in re­sponse to my ad­vo­cacy for the ‘No’ case in the same-sex marriage de­bate.

“That’s al­ways the chal­lenge of public life. I can take the heat. But I re­ally dis­like bul­lies who pick on peo­ple who don’t have a voice and can’t de­fend them­selves. So I’ll al­ways fight for those peo­ple to be heard.”

WA Lib­eral Se­na­tor Dean Smith, a same-sex marriage sup­porter who au­thored a pri­vate mem­bers Bill on the is­sue, said he, too, had been vil­i­fied.

“I have been a lit­tle dis­ap­pointed, but not sur­prised by some things said and emailed to me,” he said.

The “No” cam­paign is claim­ing sup­port for same-sex marriage is plum­met­ing af­ter the High Court dis­missed a chal­lenge to the postal vote.

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