Prime Minister John Howard has spoken out against adoption rights for same-sex couples.

During an interview with 2UE announcer John Laws program this week, Howard said a new ACT law allowing same-sex couples to adopt children was
political correctness inside the Labor Party parading itself for all the world to see.

I’m against gay adoption, just as I’m against gay marriage, Howard said on Saturday.

I think there are certain benchmark institutions and arrangements in our society that you don’t muck around with.

Later, Howard said it was a question of stability for the children involved.

I think it is incredibly important that people have role models of both sexes because that’s the kind of society that they’re born into, and the way you do that is to preserve the notion of a mother and a father.

The Prime Minister has not ruled out using the Federal Parliament to overturn the ACT law, which was part of a package of reforms designed to end discrimination against same-sex Territorians.

The law, allowing same-sex couples to apply for general adoption, as well as adopt their partner’s children were passed by the ACT government earlier this year.

ACT Chief Minister Jon Stanhope said he did not expect the federal government would step in to remove the law.

I can’t believe that the Prime Minister is serious, Stanhope told ABC radio.

I think he’s bluffing. I think he’s playing games. They’re very cynical games, but I have no expectation that they’ll go ahead.

Opposition leader Mark Latham said in a MPs meeting yesterday the Prime Minister was looking for wedge issues to try and scare middle Australia away from the Labor Party.

Howard was caught in a groundhog day from the election lead-up in 2001, Latham said, when the Tampa crisis ended a long Labor run of good popularity poll results and led to a Coalition election victory.

Meantime, a state inquiry into same-sex parenting in Tasmania heard last month that discriminatory laws left children of lesbian couples legally and financially disadvantaged.

Tasmanian Gay and Lesbian Rights Group spokesperson Rodney Croome said laws needed to be changed to provide children with as much stability as possible.

This is not a choice between opposite or same-sex parenting, but between whether children should have the relative insecurity of one legal parent or the added security and support of two, he said.

New South Wales has not included adoption rights in any reforms to discriminatory laws. The NSW Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby has declared Howard’s recent comments as deeply offensive.

His comments show how out of touch he is with the diversity of real Australian families, co-convenor Somali Cerise said.

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