Same-sex marriage is expected to return on the agenda of the Australian government after the United States Supreme Court, in a historic judgment Friday, ruled in favor of gay marriages. Australian cabinet minister Christopher Pyne reportedly said that a vote on the issue should be conducted this year.
Pyne acknowledged the impetus for same-sex marriage, saying that the Australian parliament will “deal with it at the appropriate time in the appropriate way," the Australian Associated Press (AAP) reported on Saturday. “When we come back in spring there’s every possibility that will be back on the agenda.”
However, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott seemed unfazed by the U.S. ruling. He said the verdict on gay marriage legalization was a matter for Americans, just as the decision on the subject in Ireland was a matter for the Irish, the Australian reported.
“As for our own country, obviously there’s a community debate going on, but I have views on this which are pretty well known and they haven’t changed,” Abbott reportedly said Saturday in Melbourne. The Australian premier continues to oppose the legalization of same-sex marriages.
Following the U.S. ruling, former Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd said the country should now act on marriage equality. “Fantastic decision in support of Marriage equality by US Supreme court,” Rudd, who campaigned for gay marriage in 2013, tweeted Saturday.
Earlier in June, opposition Australian Labor Party introduced a bill to legalize same-sex marriage in the country. "Our laws should be a mirror reflecting our great and generous country and our free, inclusive society," opposition leader Bill Shorten reportedly said while proposing the bill at the time.
Shorten and Labor party's deputy leader Tanya Plibersek welcomed the U.S. Supreme Court's decision, urging Australians to take a step in the direction. "This is a joyous day in America. In Australia, let us make it a call to action," they said in a joint statement, AAP reported on Saturday. "It's time to make marriage equality a reality."