Human Rights Watch

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The Australian government will let people “have their say” on same-sex marriage. The Australian High Court ruled Thursday that the government’s postal plebiscite can proceed, so next week ballots will arrive by mail, asking voters: “Should the law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry?” This non-binding vote has been criticized for being a “glorified opinion poll” and a symptom of the country’s parochial and paralyzing politics. Since the elected parliament could simply pass a marriage equality bill, the plebiscite seems little more than a costly and unwieldy bit of political pageantry.

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