Senate debates

Wednesday, 29 November 2017


Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Bill 2017; In Committee

11:16 am

Photo of Eric AbetzEric Abetz (Tasmania, Liberal Party) Share this | Hansard source

Senator Leyonhjelm's very eloquent appeal to left-wing senators won me over. I can indicate support for his amendment, but might I respectfully suggest, having listened to the Attorney's comments in relation to this, that when the vote is put, if that is necessary, that the amendment be put in two parts? I think that 47AA(a) would cover the field in any event. I would be happy, and I think the Attorney as well, to vote for that, without the need for proposed paragraph (b).

I take the Attorney's point that requirements additional to those provided by this bill would, for example, mean: I will celebrate your marriage if you use my florist, from whom I get a kickback, and the baker and the reception centre et cetera. So I was thinking of inserting an amendment: 'requirements other than of a commercial nature'. But, on reflecting more, just 'imposes an obligation on an authorised celebrant to solemnise any marriage' is not bound. I think that covers the field, without going into the suggested detail. So that would be my respectful suggestion, unless Senator Leyonhjelm were minded before the vote to seek to amend his amendment (2) by deleting the letter (a) and then proposed paragraph (b) in its entirety.


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