Support for gay marriage unclear ahead of vote
Tue, 28 Aug 2012 1:18p.m.
By Laura McQuillan
A day out from the first vote on legislation to legalise gay marriage, it's still unclear how much support the bill will receive, with many MPs saying they are still "undecided".
Louisa Wall's private member's bill has its first reading in Parliament on Wednesday.
She believes the numbers are "pretty solid" for the bill to pass, with at least 61 votes needed in the 121-seat Parliament.
Ms Wall says about 16 of Labour's 34 MPs have pledged their support for the bill.
"A few of the undecideds will hopefully join our team," she told media.
Prime Minister John Key is supporting the bill, but he will be among the minority of National Party MPs doing so.
"My guess is the majority won't back it but there'll be a slightly larger [group] that are likely to vote for it than you might otherwise think - it might be in the order of 12, 13 people," he said.
He is confident the bill will pass its first reading, but the votes could change as the legislation progresses.
"You're likely to peel a few people off - that's the history of these votes as they go through - but not substantial numbers, I wouldn't have thought."
Labour's Clayton Cosgrove is one MP who is still undecided, telling reporters this morning he is "still consulting people".
Mr Cosgrove is among MPs who voted against civil unions legislation in 2004. However, other MPs - like Mr Key - have switched sides since then.
Anti-gay marriage lobby group Family First have presented a 50,000-signature petition against the bill at Parliament today.
Spokesman Bob McCoskrie says MPs who oppose the bill, including Labour's Su'a William Sio, Ross Robertson and Damien O'Connor, National's Chester Borrows and Alfred Ngaro, and NZ First's Asenati Lole-Taylor, were expected to attend.
Supporters of the bill are planning a rally through central Wellington at midday tomorrow.
The youth wings of the National, Labour, Greens, ACT and Mana parties issued a joint statement on Monday urging their MPs to vote for the bill.
In favour/ leaning towards in favour of the bill:
Louisa Wall, David Shearer, Grant Robertson, David Parker, Jacinda Ardern, David Cunliffe, Shane Jones, Nanaia Mahuta, Maryan Street, Trevor Mallard, Charles Chauvel, Lianne Dalziel, Chris Hipkins, Phil Goff, Annette King, Darien Fenton, Clare Curran, Ruth Dyson, Parekura Horomia, Sue Moroney, Moana Mackey, Iain Lees-Galloway, Raymond Huo, Kris Faafoi, David Clark, Andrew Little, Rina Tirikatene, Megan Woods
John Key, Judith Collins, Hekia Parata, Paula Bennett, David Carter, Kate Wilkinson, Craig Foss, Chris Tremain, Maurice Williamson, Jackie Blue, Tau Henare, Nicky Wagner, Nikki Kaye, Jami-Lee Ross, Cam Calder, Scott Simpson, Ian McKelvie
Against/leaning towards being against the bill:
Sua William Sio, Damien O’Connor, Ross Robertson
Bill English, Gerry Brownlee, Tony Ryall, Phil Heatley, Chester Borrows, Nick Smith, Colin King, Paul Hutchison, Eric Roy, Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi, Tim Macindoe, Alfred Ngaro, Paul Goldsmith, Simon O’Connor, Mike Sabin
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30/08/2012 5:11:33 p.m.
All good and proper. Auspicious beginnings. Slap on the back. glasses clink. Wink, wink Nod, nod. Chuckle... chuckle. Well done guys an' gals. NZ takes another shuffle forward.
Now to jobs, schooling, health, housing, ...hungry kiddies.... preparing NZ's armed forces for new operations properly equipped?
28/08/2012 10:16:57 p.m.
....and I'd add that this specifically is set as a conscience vote NOT a party vote, which should free Banks to vote however he chooses...
28/08/2012 7:40:38 p.m.
"Actually, Banks voting for gay marriage is consistent with Act's core values of individual freedoms and classical liberalism"
It is not, however, consistent at all with Banks' previous voting record on the issue.
28/08/2012 5:30:58 p.m.
Actually, Banks voting for gay marriage is consistent with Act's core values of individual freedoms and classical liberalism. It's the same reason why Act supports Green Party initiatives to decriminalise marijuana.
I suppose it's not so much hatred of gays as ignorance of them. Quentin Crisp said that "It is not the simple statement of facts that ushers in freedom; it is the constant repetition of them that has this liberating effect. Tolerance is the result not of enlightenment, but of boredom."
28/08/2012 5:21:26 p.m.
it's not really hatred so much, Michael, as it is an extension of an authoritarian personality. Their group dynamic demands they object to these things, without thought even. read the specific objections people have mentioned. they all come under nothing more than "I find homosexuality personally distressing!". No, they all are us/them authoritarians, who feel the best way to make themselves feel good is by demonizing others.
as far as MPs are concerned... most of that is just politics.
hell, John Banks is voting FOR this! the only way to explain THAT is because of the deal he made with National.
28/08/2012 5:15:30 p.m.
I don't understand why so many people - include all the MPs who are planning on voting against this bill - hate gay people so much. I honestly don't understand where this hatred comes from.
28/08/2012 4:29:13 p.m.
I've been in multiple countries that have had this subject debated for decades. In every instance, the vast majority of the objections came from people who either used a false slippery slope argument (gay marriage -> zoophillia!), or else otherwise claimed it would destroy families and heterosexual marriage. In EVERY case where it has been legalized, none of this has happened. There has been no impact of these statutes on heterosexual marriage rates, OR divorce rates for that matter. In fact, every time these claims are made, the people making them can never, ever, provide even the slightest shred of evidence to support them. Isn't it time we simply throw irrational prejudice into the trashbin where it belongs? Gay people getting married WILL NOT AFFECT YOU NEGATIVELY. In fact, historically we all should know that the extension of rights has only resulted in a net positive good for everyone, and when rights are curtailed, everyone suffers.
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