Tuesday, 13 September 2016
Questions without Notice
My question is to the Prime Minister. This morning Lyle Shelton of the Australian Christian Lobby said that the $15 million of taxpayer funding for the marriage equality plebiscite could be spent campaigning against what is taught in Australian schools. Is that correct?
I cannot comment on what Mr Shelton said, but what I can say to you is that the purpose of the money given to the two committees will be for the production of advertising and advocacy material directed at the vote, the issue, in the plebiscite. That is all. People may have interest in other matters. If they are extraneous, if they are not pertinent to the question—
Mr Perrett interjecting—
then the money will not be used for that. I say to the honourable member that she should encourage her leader to support the plebiscite. There is the opportunity to place two opposition MPs or senators on the committees. I note, in terms of the 'No' committee, about which she appears to be concerned, that when the House last voted on this matter there were a number of Labor members who voted against a bill to allow same-sex marriage. It included the member for Lilley; it included the member for Watson; it included the member for McMahon. If they hold the same views now as they did then, the Leader of the Opposition may well put such responsible people on the committee.