Why George Christensen could avoid SSM vote
GEORGE Christensen has said he will abstain from the same sex marriage vote if he doesn't like the look of the bill.
Just over half the people who voted in the Dawson electorate backed same sex marriage, 55.1%.
Mr Christensen has promised not to vote against his electorate's wishes.
Nationally, the same-sex marriage postal vote returned a 61.6% vote in favour of changing what marriage means.
"I would not vote against the wishes of my electorate and it wants the definition of marriage changed in the marriage act,” he wrote in a statement.
"The result in the seat of Dawson is lower support than the national average for changing marriage but it is still to change it.”
However, Mr Christensen wants protections for conscientious objectors, parents and religious objectors.
There are currently two proposed bills to change the marriage act, one known as the Smith Bill and the other the Paterson Bill.
The Smith Bill is supposed to be debated today however Mr Christensen has already said he will not vote in favour of it.
He prefers the Paterson Bill.
"The Paterson Bill has a range of protections in it, protections for people of faith and parents in terms of what is taught in classrooms,” he said.
"We were repeatedly told during the marriage campaign, those issues around parents' rights and the rights of people of faith were nonsense arguments and they would not be impacted by changing the definition of marriage.
"If they are non-issues then they won't have a problem with protections made into law.”
As for the Smith Bill, it doesn't have the protections Mr Christensen wants and he won't vote for it.
"I won't vote for something that will have negative consequences for people's rights and particularly parents' rights,” he said.
"I won't vote against it, I will abstain.”
Resources minister and same-sex marriage opponent Matt Canavan said he won't get in the way of same-sex marriage being legalised.
"I'd like to congratulate those who campaigned and voted for the Yes side," he told the ABC.
"They have won a victory here, and I've always said that I will respect the wishes of the Queensland electorate that I represent, so I will be not opposing a same-sex marriage bill."