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Australia minister: Gay marriage ‘very likely’ by end of year

Australia minister: Gay marriage ‘very likely’ by end of year

A cabinet minister in the Australian government has said he expects parliament to legalize gay marriage by the end of the year, as debate on a marriage equality bill is brought forward to next month.

‘I’m confident the matter will be dealt with in the course of this year and of course, we obviously need a bill. There is a change in sentiment all the time,’ Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull told ABC radio on Tuesday (26 May).

‘I have never seen a social issue which has changed attitudes as rapidly as this one. So my feeling is that it is very likely to pass.’

Green party Senator Sarah Hanson-Young has a private member’s bill to legalize gay marriage before parliament.

Today, she brought forward a Senate debate on the bill to 18 June to build on the momentum of the Ireland referendum.

‘Gay and lesbian Australians deserve better than being treated as second-class citizens. It’s well and truly time the parliament acted,’ Hanson-Young said.

‘Cupid doesn’t discriminate and neither should the law.’

She has nominated 12 November for a parliamentary vote on the bill.