Opposition leader Tony Abbott is under continued and increasing pressure to change the Coalition policy on marriage to allow a conscience vote. This pressure has come from close to home and from within his own party. Kelly O’Dwyer, Liberal member for Higgins in Victoria, has been reported in the press as publicly stating she is “comfortable with the idea of same-sex marriage” and that, although the Coalition’s policy would continue, that, “in due course, I expect our policy in this area to evolve in step with society’s views…”
There are pockets of pro-same-sex marriage support in her electorate. The gay Liberal branch within Higgins, the Montalto Liberal Branch, said Ms O’Dwyer’s support “means a great deal.” Most voters in other areas of the Higgins electorate would support marriage as between one man and one woman.
It is important to let your federal Coalition MP know that you support the Coalition policy on marriage as between one man and one woman for life and are opposed to changing to a conscience vote. A conscience vote allows MPs to substitute their own personal views for those of their constituents who elected them and often different to their own party policy.
Supporters should also let their Coalition federal MPs know that continued Coalition policy in support of marriage as between one man and one woman is an important election issue.