News National Barnaby Joyce’s ‘get out of my face’ warning on same sex marriage poll

Barnaby Joyce’s ‘get out of my face’ warning on same sex marriage poll

Barnaby Joyce wants same sex marriage advocates to get out of his face. Photo: AAP
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Barnaby Joyce thinks Australians have made up their minds about same sex marriage and the noisy advocacy won’t change that.

And the deputy prime minister just wants those advocates to get out of his face.

With survey forms hitting post boxes from Tuesday, the campaigns on both sides of the same-sex marriage have ramped up.

Tens of thousands of people rallied in support of marriage equality around the country on Sunday.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Opposition Leader Bill Shorten made strong cases in favour of change at campaign launches in Sydney.

But Mr Joyce says people are already “sick of being yelled at”.

“They’ve up their mind, they’ve got it worked out, they’re going to send their ballot back,” he told ABC radio on Monday.

“Sometimes I believe on both sides the advocacy is doing more to harm them than to help.”

Mr Joyce personally wants to keep the existing definition of marriage as being between a man and a woman but will not stand in the way of a ‘yes’ result when a private bill is put to parliament.

“I just don’t want people standing on the corner yelling at me, telling me if I don’t agree with them then I’m somehow less than human,” he said.
“Get out of my face.”

Mr Turnbull on Sunday made his strongest yet statement pressing the case for the yes vote, saying it was fundamentally a question of fairness.

He was “utterly unpersuaded” by the idea that his 38-year-long marriage to wife Lucy was undermined by gay couples and noted other countries where same-sex marriage had been legalised.

“In any one of those nations has the sky fallen in, has life as we know it ground to a halt, has traditional marriage been undermined? The answer is plainly no,” he said.

Mr Shorten told the Sydney rally it was time for same-sex marriage and apologised that politicians had failed to make it happen.

Survey forms with the question “Should the law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry?” will be mailed to voters from Tuesday.

They’ll have the option to tick a “yes” or “no” box and the result will be announced on November 15.

If the majority of Australians voted yes like him, a private member’s bill will go to parliament, which Mr Turnbull predicted would “sail through”.