Two key south-west MPs believe marriage should only be between a woman and a man

Western Victoria MP James Purcell confirmed his views on marriage equality.
Western Victoria MP James Purcell confirmed his views on marriage equality.

Key south-west MPs still personally believe marriage should only be between a woman and a man.

Vote 1 Jobs Western Victoria MP James Purcell, based in Port Fairy, said his personal views would not dictate how he would vote.

“Personally, I believe marriage is meant to be between a man and a woman,” he said.

“However, I am aware this issue is very important to the community and if any legislation required my vote to make it law I would take the issue to the community, just as we did with the CFA.”

Wannon MP Dan Tehan confirmed personal views he expressed prior to the 2016 federal election still stood – that marriage should only be between a man and a woman. He said the views were informed by his personal religious beliefs and his upbringing.

“That’s my personal view, but obviously I have always been happy to discuss and engage people on this issue and understand that people have different views on this subject,” Mr Tehan said.

Mr Tehan was a strong supporter of a plebiscite being held, and has said he would vote according to its outcome despite his personal views.

The plebiscite was voted down in the Senate last November by Labor, the Greens, the Nick Xenophon team and Derryn Hinch.

The federal opposition pushed for a direct vote in parliament.

Ballarat City Council passed a motion renewing its support for marriage equality on Wednesday night, and Warrnambool City Council passed a motion supporting it on Monday July 3.

Polwarth MP Richard Riordan said because he was a state MP without a vote on the issue, he would not share his personal views.

Mr Riordan said the plebiscite had been used as a “political football” by the left side of politics, and a plebiscite would give “national ownership” to an issue many people felt strongly about at a personal level.

“It is important to remember that the vast majority of the world’s political and religious systems do not support gay marriage,” he said. “In fact many countries are openly hostile, with prison and even death sentences the consequence.

“Australia, with the largest immigrant population per capita in the world, have a very large cohort of people with traditional views, who should not be pilloried and marginalised.”

South West Coast MP Roma Britnell publicly declared her support for marriage equality in February this year.

“Respect, tolerance and treating others the way I wanted to be treated were values my parents instilled in me and they are values I still have to this day,” she said.