Democrats seek gay vote
The Democrats have hit back at the “scary” religious right, warning a new Senate after the next election could see gay rights wound back and Australia return to the dark ages.
“If Family First do win the balance of power, then Australia faces having its legislative procedures hijacked by fundamentalist religious groups,” Democrats leader Lyn Allison said.
“You can wave goodbye to progressive laws on stem cell research, equal entitlements for same-sex couples, contraception – the list is endless.”
Allison was responding to comments by Family First leader Steve Fielding that the Howard Government would lose the balance of power.
“The real question is do you want the Greens or Family First to hold the balance of power in Australia? There is a real chance that the Greens may get it,” Fielding said when announcing Senate candidates on the weekend.
Allison said the Democrats were a moderate and centralist alternative that had a track record of using the balance of power responsibly.
All the minor parties have agreed on some issues such as blocking the recent pay rise for MPs.
Fielding had already achieved one win under a future Rudd government, with Labor promising to implement Family Impact Statements if elected.
A Democrat spokesman said members of both major parties had shown interest in attending their “ad hoc” inquiry on the Same-Sex: Same Entitlements Bill introduced earlier this month. A significant number of submissions by the public had already been received.