Flat White

Time for Barnett to stop being a prat on the plebiscite

27 August 2016

7:36 PM

27 August 2016

7:36 PM

The WA Premier, Colin Barnett, needs to smarten himself up.

He has every right to remind PM Malcolm Turnbull that a plebiscite should not be mixed up with a WA state election campaign, in March 2017. Indeed, Gough Whitlam should have remembered that when he removed the superphosphate bounty for farmers shortly before the 1974 State Election. It cost Labor premier John Tonkin his job.

However, Barnett is out of order to say we do not need a plebiscite.

Conscription was divisive in 1916-17 but PM Billy Hughes still held two referendums and lost both of them because the people decided, in their wisdom, overseas military service should not be compulsory.

Barnett aligns himself with left wingers like Labor Senator Louise Pratt who considers it a ‘dumb idea….for people to be forced to the polls’. Oh, really then why don’t we just ignore having elections and ‘forcing’ voters to the polls, completely?

Then we could run on the fuhrerprinzip and just be governed at the leader’s whim.

The question to be put is: do you approve of a law to permit people of the same sex to marry? This is simple and fair (Yes/No). Typically, we now have the radicals saying such a question does not cater for the transgender set! Perhaps we should cater for the asexual amoebas in the question, as well?

Barnett was also out of order, in April, in rebuking Southern River MLA, Peter Abetz, for his legitimate comments on gay marriage at a joint sitting of WA Parliament that endorsed Pat Dodson for a casual Senate vacancy.

Dodson was replacing Joe Bullock who could not stomach the attempts of apparatchiks in his own party to compel Labor representatives to redefine and destroy the meaning of marriage

Barnett, Brendon Grylls — who walked out on the Abetz speech and is now back as National Party leader — and ALP critics should check their facts.

Far from being a ‘ceremony,’ as alleged by some (including The West Australian), that occasion was a debatable motion and Abetz was justified in his courteous and disciplined speech in supporting Dodson’s elevation. He simply reminded Dodson of the importance of traditional marriage.

However, the attack on Ross Lightfoot MLC, in 1997, was anything but restrained, when he was being endorsed for a casual Senate vacancy.

On that occasion the Labor leader, and his deputy, Geoff Gallop and Eric Ripper, mounted a vitriolic attack on Lightfoot’s elevation to the Senate.

It’s time for the Premier to stop being a prat, the people are going to vote on marriage. Turnbull would simply destroy himself and the Federal Government if he was to welch on the commitment given for the people to decide whether marriage should be redefined.

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