MPs plead for ‘yes’ vote

Tayler NealeAlbany Advertiser

State and Federal Parliamentarians are calling on the Albany community to turn out in force at the Albany Says YES-Marriage Equality rally this Saturday at Middleton Beach.

The event, hosted by Albany Gay and Lesbian, aims to highlight local support for a “yes” vote in the same-sex marriage postal survey.

MLC Alannah MacTiernan, WA Senator Dean Smith and Member for the South West Diane Evers will speak at the rally, which will include other entertainment and activities.

Ms Evers encouraged Albany residents to take part in the postal survey.

“Albany is traditionally a conservative town, and the ABC Vote Compass website shows support for same-sex marriage in this Federal electorate is at 51 per cent,” she said.

“If we maintain or increase this vote, we will influence what happens at a national scale because the Federal Liberal member for O’Connor has promised to vote on this issue in the Federal Parliament according to this electorate’s vote.

“So that is why I am reaching out to all the potential ‘yes’ voters in Albany who have not voted because they do not feel that this is their issue.

“This is about making someone else’s life better — about giving our neighbours, our friends or our work colleagues the same rights that we have.”

Senator Smith said he believed there was support for a “yes” vote in Albany.

“Having spent a lot of time in Albany in my first five years as a Senator, I’m confident many Albany residents will vote ‘yes’,” he said. “I’m personally encouraged by many Albany people who have reached out to tell me they’ll be supporting a ‘yes’ vote.”

O’Connor MP Rick Wilson has opposed same-sex marriage since being elected in 2013, but told the Albany Advertiser recently he would honour the decision of the electorate.

Senator Smith said he respected Mr Wilson’s stance.

“Rick and I are close Parliamentary colleagues and on this issue we respect each other’s heartfelt conviction, even though they’re not the same,” he said.

The rally kicks off at noon and will run until 2pm.

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