A Liberal Party branch has voted unanimously in favour of a conscience vote on marriage equality.
The motion by the party’s East Sydney branch is believed to be the first of its kind in Australia, and increases pressure on Tony Abbott to allow his MPs a conscience vote when the issue is debated in Parliament later this year.
“By supporting a free vote on marriage equality, the East Sydney branch is standing up for the fundamental Liberal Party principle of individual freedom,” says Australian Marriage Equality national convener Alex Greenwich.
“It also sends a clear message to Tony Abbott that this issue will to continue grow until he allows Coalition members the same freedom as Labor MPs currently have to vote according according to their conscience.”
Greenwich says Australian Marriage Equality will be writing to other Liberal Party branches asking them to pass similar motions to the East Sydney branch.
“Failure to grant such a vote will result in dissatisfaction from Coalition branches, members and voters, many of whom want their party to play a part in bringing about this historic reform.”