The Marriage Equality Plebiscite Bill Has Passed The House Of Representatives

    It now heads to the Senate, where it will likely be voted down.

    by ,

    The government's bill for a same-sex marriage plebiscite has passed the House of Representatives, 76 votes to 67.


    The government bill was supported by crossbenchers Bob Katter and Cathy McGowan, and opposed by Labor, Andrew Wilkie, and Rebekha Sharkie.

    Greens MP Adam Bandt, who also opposes the plebiscite, was absent for the vote as he is on paternity leave.

    There was a "boo!" from Labor MPs as the bill passed, and no discernible celebrations on the government benches.

    It passed "not with a bang, but with a whimper" one Labor MP told BuzzFeed News.

    Lukas Coch / AAPIMAGE

    Independent MPs Cathy McGowan and Bob Katter vote with the government in support of the plebiscite.

    Despite the intense attention on the issue of same-sex marriage, the public gallery was deserted for the vote.

    Security told BuzzFeed News they had closed the doors of the chamber to the public before the plebiscite vote – normal practice for the period prior to Question Time.

    A debate on the bill occurred over several days, during which many government MPs contended a plebiscite is the best way of dealing with same-sex marriage, and Labor argued the public vote is costly, unnecessary and harmful to the LGBTI community.

    The debate was cut short by the government on Thursday, angering some Labor MPs who remained on the speaking list.

    During the division, shadow minister for employment and workplace relations, Brendan O'Connor, rose to complain he had been denied a chance to speak.

    @TurnbullMalcolm has just banned MPs from debating marriage equality after parroting about free speech. #hypocrites #gutless #auspol

    The bill will now go to the Senate for debate, where it is expected to be voted down.

    Forty senators have pledged to vote against the bill, two more than the 38 needed to block legislation.

    Here is the full list of the politicians who voted for (76) and against (67) the plebiscite #auspol

    Lane Sainty is the editor of BuzzFeed News in Australia and is based in Sydney.

    Contact Lane Sainty at

    Alice Workman is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Canberra.

    Contact Alice Workman at

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