TURNBULL: Same-sex marriage would make Australia a ‘stronger nation’

Thousands gather to rally for marriage equality on September 10, 2017 in Sydney, Australia ahead of a national postal survey. Photo: Lisa Maree Williams/ Getty Images.

This week Australians will start to receive their postal ballots to vote on same-sex marriage after the High Court dismissed two challenges against the survey.

Speaking on radio Triple M’s breakfast show this morning, prime minister Malcolm Turnbull encourage people to vote “Yes” to support same-sex marriage becoming legalised.

He also explained why he thinks marriage, of any sort, makes a country more unified, saying “it is the bedrock of society”.

Here’s what he said:

The things that threaten marriages are lack of commitment. I mean marriage is all about commitment, so what threatens marriage? It’s neglect, it’s abandonment, it’s adultery, it’s basically losing that commitment -it’s a lack of commitment.

So if two gay people down the road, who are living together decide to get married, how does that threaten my nearly 38-year-old marriage to Lucy? Of course it doesn’t.

If lack of commitment is the problem, then people showing commitment should be a positive, it actually would encourage other people to do the same.

I mean I know I sound like a very conservative person when I say this, but it’s very heartfelt. I sincerely believe we would be a stronger nation if more people were married and fewer were divorced.

Throughout all my life, I’ve always encouraged, you know the ‘singles’ to get married, the ‘marrieds’ to stay married, you know, people who are straying to mend their ways, and those who have been wronged to forgive. I passionately believe in marriage and I think it is the bedrock of society.

So if two gay people who have got a commitment to each other and are living together and are supporting each other through life’s ups and downs and tribulations and successes and everything else, why shouldn’t we recognise that – the state, the government – recognise that as a marriage?

So it is a question of fairness, but in terms of traditional marriage, if you want to support traditional marriage you should be focused on supporting commitment.