Thank you Tanya Plibersek and Penny Wong for Supporting a Binding Vote on Marriage Equality

In the lead-up to ALP’s National Conference in July, if the #ItsTimeToBind campaign is to be successful, it will be important for senior figures within the party to come on board and express their personal support for a binding vote in favour of marriage equality.

Which is why it was so encouraging that, on 28 March, two members of the current parliamentary leadership group publicly indicated their own commitment to a binding vote.

In an article which appeared in The Saturday Paper, Deputy Opposition Leader the Hon Tanya Plibersek MP, and Leader of the Opposition in the Senate, Senator the Hon Penny Wong, both confirmed their backing for a change to the rules (article here: http://www.thesaturdaypaper.com.au/news/politics/2015/03/28/pressure-builds-same-sex-marriage-libs-and-alp/14274612001683#.VR8hjboxGX1).

I have sent short letters to both Ms Plibersek, and Ms Wong, thanking them for their public stands (copied below). Hopefully, these will be the first of many such thanks we get to write in the 16 weeks remaining til the party’s delegates assemble in Melbourne.

The Hon Tanya Plibersek MP

Deputy Leader of the Opposition

PO Box 6022

House of Representatives

Parliament House

CANBERRA ACT 2600

Sunday 5 April 2015

Dear Ms Plibersek

Thank you for Supporting a Binding Vote in Favour of Marriage Equality

I am writing to express my thanks to you for supporting a binding vote in favour of marriage equality, as confirmed in an article published in The Saturday Paper on 28 March 2015.

If the campaign for a binding vote on marriage equality is to be successful at ALP National Conference in July, then it will require leaders within the party to stand up for the principle that the recognition of the human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) Australians should not be optional.

Thank you for publicly supporting this principle, and for demonstrating leadership in the process.

Hopefully, you will be joined in this position in coming months by the majority of your parliamentary colleagues, from the Leader of the Opposition, the Hon Bill Shorten MP, down – and that, ultimately, the majority of delegates to ALP National Conference agree.

In this way, not only will the Australian Labor Party make history by changing its position, but the Australian Parliament will be much closer to making history by changing the law – something which I am sure you agree is long overdue.

Thank you again for supporting a binding vote. Let’s hope the campaign is successful come July.

Sincerely

Alastair Lawrie

Deputy Opposition Leader, the Hon Tanya Plibersek MP, confirmed her support for a binding vote on Saturday 28 March.

Deputy Opposition Leader, the Hon Tanya Plibersek MP, confirmed her support for a binding vote on Saturday 28 March.

Senator the Hon Penny Wong

Leader of the Opposition in the Senate

PO Box 6100

Parliament House

CANBERRA ACT 2600

Sunday 5 April 2015

Dear Senator Wong

Thank you for Supporting a Binding Vote in Favour of Marriage Equality

I am writing to express my thanks to you for supporting a binding vote in favour of marriage equality, as confirmed in an article published in The Saturday Paper on 28 March 2015.

If the campaign for a binding vote on marriage equality is to be successful at ALP National Conference in July, then it will require leaders within the party to stand up for the principle that the recognition of the human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) Australians should not be optional.

It is incredibly pleasing that your spokesperson’s quote in the article strongly reflects this view: “Senator Wong’s longstanding position is that marriage equality should not be a matter of conscience, it should be Labor policy.”

Thank you for publicly supporting this principle, and for demonstrating leadership in the process.

Hopefully, you will be joined in this position in coming months by the majority of your parliamentary colleagues, from the Leader of the Opposition, the Hon Bill Shorten MP, down – and that, ultimately, the majority of delegates to ALP National Conference agree.

In this way, not only will the Australian Labor Party make history by changing its position, but the Australian Parliament will be much closer to making history by changing the law – something which I am sure you agree is long overdue.

Thank you again for supporting a binding vote. Let’s hope the campaign is successful come July.

Sincerely

Alastair Lawrie

"Senator Wong's longstanding position is that marriage equality should not be a matter of conscience, it should be Labor policy." Hear, hear.

“Senator Wong’s longstanding position is that marriage equality should not be a matter of conscience, it should be Labor policy.” Hear, hear.

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