Labor opposition Senator Penny Wong delivered a devastating rebuke to the government’s re-attempt on Wednesday to pass legislation for a plebiscite on same-sex marriage.
Senator Wong, who has two young children with her partner Sophie Allouache, said the plebiscite would be nothing more than an “expensive stunt” and ridiculed the assertion by Liberal Senator Mathias Cormann, who was sitting opposite, that the vote would be a “unifying moment” for Australia.
The Senate later rejected the plebiscite and so now a similarly controversial postal vote on same-sex marriage will be conducted.
See a video excerpt from the speech above and read an excerpt below. A bet365 bonuscode video of the full speech is at the bottom.
“I hope that people watching me in this debate would not think I am a shrinking violet, right. I know what a hard debate is like. But I tell you, have a read of some of the things which are said about us and our families and then come back here and tell us this is a unifying moment.
“The Australian Christian lobby described our children as the stolen generation. We love our children. And I object, as do every person who cares about children, and as do all those couples in this country, same-sex couples who have kids, to be told our children are a stolen generation.
“You talk about unifying moments? It is not a unifying moment. It is exposing our children to that kind of hatred.
“I wouldn’t mind so much if you were prepared to speak out on it. If the Prime Minister was prepared to stand up and say “that is wrong”. Maybe he can stand up for some people who don’t have a voice. Because we know the sort of debate that is already there.
“Let me say, for many children in same-sex couple families and for many young LGBTI kids, this ain’t a respectful debate already.”