The "NO" Case in the Australian SSM Debate


The mandate comes from us , the people, voting them into their seats.

A plebiscite or this survey don’t affect the Constitution. It’s not described in the Constitution, electoral act or refoerendum act. Therefore it’s outcome bears no legal weight.

Rau are you an Aussie? Do you understand our system of government , it’s different to the states.

A Referendum is the only legally binding poll of the people. Because it’s outcome affects the Constitution.

Do you understand how a referendum works?

The two most known would be the republic referendum and the aboriginal referendum. And to alter the constitution to add a preamble.


I see. That a fairly personal view of the meaning of “mandate” Rose.

And Rose - the party we voted into Government proposed a plebiscite, and declared they would not legislate without one. We then voted them into government. Do you see where I’m leading?


I just edited to discuss the difference between Referendum and plebiscite/ survey.

Please read it. I was a bit slow editing due to issues my end :slight_smile:


Rose - this seems irrelevant to the matter of the usual understanding of the term “mandate” you’ve raised. You appear to be making arguments about matters not in debate.


politicians can promise anything they want, it’s not binding, as we all know.

Promising a plebiscite means nothing, it can be run, but still carries no weight.

A mandate is given to whomever we elect to govern, when we vote them in.

We are giving the person a Commission , namely run the country, represent your constituency.

A mandate gives a person elected the authority to run the country, carry out policy, introduce new policy, laws, proposals.

That’s what mandate means.

In politics it means.
"“the authority to carry out a policy, regarded as given by the electorate to a party or candidate that wins an election.
“he called an election to seek a mandate for his policies””"


Now this entire thing is going to get really sticky if a Constitutional Referendum is required for SSM. No one seems to be discussing that at this point.

But here

So if it comes to that, we all vote in a correctly run, legally binding referendum. And traditionally everyone votes no. They prefer the status quo.

'"“The Australian public should not want the federal government to offer a plebiscite to decide the fate of the same-sex marriage. The government is not bound to act on a plebiscite; the result is only an indication of what the public wants. A constitutional referendum is needed to bring same-sex marriage into law. Any changes to the Australian constitution can only be amended by the voters by a referendum not a plebiscite.”"

See my point now?

I will add this

The legal uncertainty is not limited to the states. The Constitution gives the federal parliament power over ‘marriage’, but the High Court has not said what this term means. The key question is whether federal power is limited by the view of the 19th century framers of the Constitution that ‘marriage’ means a union between a man and a woman, or has it evolved to encompass other relationships. George Williams, professor of law at the University of New South Wales, says the bottom line is that whichever parliament first legislates for same-sex marriage, a High Court challenge will likely follow.

From this


So has any of this hit the media? No, because the government doesn’t want to tell us how far down the financial tax payer rabbit hole this can go.

The survey is like a pacifying dummy. Hope they say no, we leave it at that and don’t go down a high court legal rabbit hole after a referendum, if the government gets landlocked.


OK. What policy did the government take to the election. It was to hold a plebiscite and if popular support for a change of the law was demonstrated, introduce a bill to change the law on Marriage to allow SSM.

Had the parliament not blocked the move (which only occurred given the dual chamber parliamentary system), the government would have held a plebiscite, and while you may have objected, you would need to concede they had a mandate for that policy.

Given the government is now conducting survey which requires only the authority of the elected executive government - which is as close to a plebiscite as possible - why do you object? If you don’t like a survey, then the only course you would leave the Government would be to do nothing - since that would be in accordance with the policy they took to the electorate. It is the government which decides which Bills are debated in parliament.

I am at a loss to understand what you want(ed) the government to do - what you believe it should do?


Rau, read the rest of it. Please. Understand my point. We are discussing this at university level, with educated political experts and lawyers.

Whatever Turnbull thinks, he isn’t going to have a dream run. No nothing but net for the government over this.

And you can get your bottom dollar, john Howard is already drawing up the battle plan to lead into referendum territory


I will put this here for consideration too, although it’s Wikipedia.


""In Australia, the Marriage Act 1961 is the current Act that regulates marriage law in Australia. The Act was passed by the Australian Parliament and has been amended on numerous occasions and applies uniformly throughout Australia; and any law made by a State or Territory inconsistent with the Act is invalid. The Act is made pursuant to power granted to the federal parliament under s.51(xxi) of the Australian Constitution. The Act recognises only monogamous, heterosexual marriages and does not recognise any other forms of union, including traditional Aboriginal unions.[1] However, the Family Law Act 1975 treats de facto relationships, including same-sex relationships, and polygamous marriages[2] as marriages for the purpose of recognising the rights of parties at a breakup. Since 2009, the Family Law Act 2009 has recognised the property rights of each partner of de facto relationships, including homosexual relationships, on separation""


No. The Federal Marriage Act regulates marriage, and the Constitution does not. The Federal Marriage act has always stated that marriage is between a man and a woman (nothing prevented it saying something else). A former Prime Minister made that more explicit several years ago.

The material you quoted is from a letter to a newspaper by an ordinary person. He provides no justification whatsoever to purse a referendum. What would be the terms of the referendum? Has anybody to this point proposed that the Constitution should govern marriage?

Is it your contention that each matter should first be introduced into the Constitution before legislating? The electors would be kept busy.

The second item you reference about State legislating is of no substance. Yes, a State could legislate for SSM - but there are a couple of consequences:

  • it would have effect in only that State;
  • it would likely be invalidated because it contradicts a federal law.

Rose - where is this scattergun approach leading?


That’s right. The federal parliament has all the authority to regulate marriage. It’s laws do so.

Various federal laws have already granted to those who are not married numerous rights and obligations which are the same as those they would have were they married. This applies to defato partnerships, including same sex.


When you tell me what the Government should do - what it is you want to happen, maybe I will have some prospect of understanding your point.



Do you understand what triggers a referendum.


A proposition to change the Constitution. It is progressed by way of an appropriate bill passed into law causing the referendum to occur.

Would you answer the question I’ve put to you a couple of times?


Yes, I did mean your posts, but based on your explanation, we don’t have the luxury of arguing over minutia.


Rau, and anyone interested,

Here is the history of the attempts to change the definition of marriage, and introduce and pass bills on it.

As you can see it’s quite a long ongoing issue.

This is not as simple as hey let’s do a survey. This is just another tactic, to push their agenda through.

And superluigi, the liberal party here ( liberal meaning the opposite to what it means in the states) will be making damn sure they have referendum plans and other landlocked plans in place.

If at the next election, labour is elected, they will just try to push the thing through, in 2019. . They have stated that more or less in the chronology where they discuss the conscious vote.


I have, several times.

What confuses you


Thanks for the history.

Are you referring to the pro-SSM agenda or the anti-SSM agenda? The general charge that is levelled is that the survey was a last ditch attempt to stall the introduction of SSM.

Is there still no answer to the simple question I asked you - what should or do you want the Government to do?


Perhaps you used invisible ink?

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