Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced today that Australians will vote for the next government on 14 September this year.
Gillard said she has given such long notice before the election, some say the longest in history, so that the year's political debates can be 'not of fevered campaign but of cool and reasoned deliberation'.
Australian Marriage Equality said gay marriage will be a key issue in the election.
'Just as the 2010 election saw marriage equality move to centre stage in Australian politics, the 2013 election will see it become a key vote winner for those who support it,' said national convener Rodney Croome.
'The lesson from last year's US election is that support for marriage equality is a vote winner, especially among young people.'
Croome said the advocacy group will be canvasing all candidates about their views on marriage equality and lobbying for more support. They will also appeal to the opposition to change their policy to allow their MPs and senators to vote freely in a conscience vote on any marriage equality legislation in parliament.
Neither Gillard nor oppostion leader Tony Abbott support marriage equality.