At 10am this morning, the stats came in via the Australian Bureau of Statistics at 61.6% in favour of YES!
It’s sure felt like a long, tumultuous road since the Turnbull government began pushing for a nationwide plebiscite on marriage equality. After the attempt to hold a compulsory vote at the beginning of 2017 was blocked by the Senate, there was a second endeavour to pass a similar bill through last August.
Unsuccessful, the government concocted a ‘next best thing’ solution by holding a voluntary postal survey to gauge Australia’s views on same-sex marriage. For what looked like just another delay-tactic, the Liberal’s right-wing contingency have ultimately shot themselves in the foot with a record number of young Australians enrolling to vote, and actually doing so.
It’s been an expensive exercise in posing a question that the plethora of polls and the overwhelming public opinion had already answered. Yet, given the result, the $122 million spent on the whole ordeal somehow feels worth it.
As an example of solidarity within the LGBTIQ community and fellow supporters, the masses gathered in public spaces with friends, family and loved-ones for the historic announcement. After a short celebration of the much-deserved victory, numerous bills have already been drafted in Government for a final decision.
While there’s still a solid stretch of highway to go in passing marriage equality through Parliament, this is a massive step for Australia in joining the many other developed democracies that have already legalised same-sex marriage. It’s more than likely that we’ll see the bill pass before 2017 is out, too.
Congratulations to all of our LGBTIQ readers and the supporting community. Today’s result proves that the work behind the YES Campaign, spreading the word (and love) via social media, and countless rallies have not gone unnoticed.