Hug or high-five every Aussie you see today, because they’re probably gutted to be missing out on one of the most epic celebrations since the millennium back home.
Crack open a Fosters: Australia is celebrating. For the last few months the government has been conducting a nationwide postal survey to gauge national support for same-sex marriage. The results have just come in…and it’s a yes! Every territory and every state in the country has voted in favour of legalisation, with an overall yes vote of 61.6%.
The vote caused controversy in Australia - and it doesn’t mean same-sex marriage is actually legal, yet. This was a non-binding survey, and there’s a lot of political back-and-forth that needs to happen before it becomes a law. But Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has said it’s his aim to get everything sorted before Christmas, and the country’s incredible activists will stay on his case until he does.
Today, the country took to Twitter to express their joy at the news.
The country has found a new hero in senator Penny Wong. The first openly gay woman in federal parliament, Wong had to watch for years as her own party refused to support same-sex marriage. Understandably, her reaction was emotional.
Amid the joy and the jokes, many Twitter users took a moment to make the important point that something as fundamental as the right to marry who you love should never have been subject to a public opinion poll in the first place. This has been a big point of contention over the past few months in Australia.
But given that the vote did happen, the yes result clearly feels like a huge victory.
This happy couple will have to wait a few more months until they can walk down the aisle for real, but clearly today felt like an appropriate day to dress for a white wedding.
Congratulations Australia. Fingers crossed legislation is formally passed by the end of this year.