Nationalist who opposes same-sex marriage is forced to answer question from gay brother.
The conservative Australian coalition senator Bridget McKenzie appeared on an ABC Q&A on Monday to answer questions about a plebiscite on same-sex marriage in that country.
But one gay querent also happened to be her brother Alastair.
“Given the majority of parliamentarians and Australians now support marriage equality, is a $160 million plebiscite necessary?” Alastair asked. “And what impact do you think the debate will have on the emotional wellbeing of gays and lesbians like me?”
McKenzie is a member of The Nationals a conservative party, and she has spoken publicly about her opposition to same-sex marriage.
She answered: “I think it will only be damaging if all of us as Australians choose to actually not respect each other’s views in this particular debate.
“I believe it is a conscience issue, and that the definition of marriage is between a man and a woman. Polls would suggest I’m in the minority.”
The plebiscite, or public vote has been criticized by some in the Australian government as being not only expensive, but inflammatory.
Daniel Andrews the Victorian Premiere said such a public vote would ignite a “harmful, spiteful debate.”
Australian drag star Panti Bliss has also said that the political process will be “very uncomfortable and often unpleasant” for LGBT people.
Watch the debate below: skip ahead to 58:36 to see McKenzie's response to her brother's question: