Christine Forster: As We Come To The Crunch, Here Are Some Facts

IT’S time to accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative on marriage.

The 16 million postal ballots on same-sex marriage have now mostly been delivered. That means the country has come to crunch time in a 13-year journey which began when parliament under John Howard changed the law, without consulting the people, to specify marriage could only be between a man and a woman.

In the Yes corner the team is asking for the right to marry to be extended to each and every one of us. In the No corner they are maintaining that marriage is exclusively for heterosexual couples.

Warwick Smith: It’s time to extend marriage to all

It could be said that everything in Australia’s modern history is, at its core, about infrastructure.

We are a nation of builders. With extraordinary courage and conviction, we have built towns and cities, roads and rail. We have moved mountains.

We have forged connections across the nation and we have done so, always, with the strongest commitment to our country and its people, and with the clearest eye to the future.

David Crowe: Eminent Liberals stand up in support of same-sex marriage

David Crowe: Eminent Liberals stand up in support of same-sex marriage

Three of the Liberal Party’s most experienced figures have backed the case for same-sex marriage and warned against the push for new laws on religious freedom, with former party leader Andrew Peacock revealing he has voted Yes on the ground of fairness.

Mr Peacock and former cabinet colleagues Fred Chaney and Peter Baume are putting their names to the Yes campaign at a key moment in the debate, after the latest Newspoll showed a fall in support for change among more conservative voters.

“As a Liberal, I’ve always been on about empowering people. To vote Yes is just one more way of empowering people to live decent lives,” Dr Baume told The Australian. “I’ve got a friend who’s been with the same partner for 50 years. It just seems incredible to me that they can’t get married.”

Christine Forster: Tony Abbott's Machiavellian games on marriage must stop says his sister Christine Forster

Christine Forster: Tony Abbott's Machiavellian games on marriage must stop says his sister Christine Forster

When my fiancée Virginia and I heard news of Thursday's High Court decision to allow the postal plebiscite on same-sex marriage, our immediate reaction was one of relief. Finally we have a clear and immediate path to marriage equality in Australia.

Virginia and I have been engaged since 2013. Since then the debate over same-sex marriage has waxed and waned as our federal politicians - including my brother, former prime minister Tony Abbott - have played relentlessly Machiavellian games with an issue that matters little to most of them personally. But for us, and our many friends who plan to marry, it has been an awful roller coaster ride, mostly of gut wrenching dips as our hopes for change have been raised, only to be repeatedly dashed.

Greg Sheridan: Yes to same-sex marriage and to religious freedom

Greg Sheridan: Yes to same-sex marriage and to religious freedom

Assuming we get to vote on same-sex marriage, the most important question is the principle of the thing. Also important, however, are what the result will mean for religious liberty and for the onward march of identity politics.

I will be voting Yes for straightforward reasons. The idea of marriage as a lifelong commitment between a man and a woman has lost social consensus and is honoured more in the breach than the practice. Therefore it is not reas­on­able for the state to enforce this ideal.

Same-sex marriage debate: Helen Coonan on why I changed from 'no' to 'yes'

Same-sex marriage debate: Helen Coonan on why I changed from 'no' to 'yes'

There are few issues where public opinion has moved so significantly in my lifetime as has occurred on same-sex marriage.

When I first entered Parliament in 1996, being in a same-sex relationship was still a criminal act in Tasmania.

Try explaining that to a school-leaver these days. It would be like describing a foreign country or what it's like to live through a recession.

That's why one of the least credible arguments against the same-sex marriage postal plebiscite is that Australians aren't up for having a civilised debate.

Janet Albrechtsen: Same-sex marriage: A libertarian conservative case for voting 'yes'

Janet Albrechtsen: Same-sex marriage: A libertarian conservative case for voting 'yes'

If the High Court decides the upcoming same-sex marriage postal vote can go ahead this month, I will vote Yes.

Some will say that casts me as conservative charlatan, akin to finding copies of The Sydney Morning Herald, The Saturday Paper and The Monthly in my recycling bin. Such is the sad state of debate in this country. Yet voting Yes is entirely consistent with anti-statist, libertarian and indeed conservative beliefs that the state should stay out of our personal lives. Here is the libertarian conservative case for voting Yes to same-sex marriage.

Voting No because same-sex marriage activists in politics, the media and beyond have overplayed their hand is not a position of principle. It’s a reaction rather than an answer to the broader question of whether gay and lesbian couples should be allowed to marry.

Karen Barlow: Same-Sex Marriage Is Not A Left/Right Issue

CANBERRA -- Allowing individuals to live the life they want without harming others? Promoting and supporting the institution of marriage?

Just who or what has that argument for same-sex marriage?

If you think same-sex marriage is all about lefties verses the toffs. Or campaigning for the, in play, marriage equality postal survey is just greenies verses the conservatives, think again. And here's why.

James Massola: Liberals and Nationals for 'yes': new same-sex marriage campaign to be launched

James Massola: Liberals and Nationals for 'yes': new same-sex marriage campaign to be launched

High-profile Coalition MPs past and present are set to launch a campaign on Monday to persuade Australians to vote "yes" in the same-sex marriage postal survey.

Former NSW premier Nick Greiner, Melbourne lord mayor Robert Doyle and Howard government cabinet minister Amanda Vanstone will lead the "Libs and Nats for Yes" campaign, while cabinet ministers including Kelly O'Dwyer and Simon Birmingham are also set to play a big role in the campaign.

Greg Brown: Nick Greiner blasts No camp’s ‘religious freedom’ SSM claims

Greg Brown: Nick Greiner blasts No camp’s ‘religious freedom’ SSM claims

Liberal Party federal president Nick Greiner has been named the patron of the Coalition’s Yes campaign for the same-sex marriage survey and has criticised tactics from the No camp in trying to make it a debate about other issues.

Mr Greiner, a former NSW premier, will be a key figure in the Liberal and Nationals Yes campaign, with the group seeking to reach out to conservative voters and persuade them of the merits of changing the Marriage Act.

Nick Greiner: Marriage for all: a conservative ideal

Nick Greiner: Marriage for all: a conservative ideal

Marriage is an institution that celebrates stability and commitment, and in doing so aligns with the values of the Liberal Party.

As the home of liberals and conservatives, there is a very strong case for Liberals to back same-sex marriage. It is a conservative and liberal issue at its heart, which is why I am happy to be patron of Liberals and Nationals for Yes. This is far from a radical position, as the Yes case is supported by the Prime Minister and a clear majority of state and territory Liberal leaders.

Christine Forster: Yes vote can underline mutual respect and a fair go

Christine Forster: Yes vote can underline mutual respect and a fair go

I’ll be voting yes — which is the fair thing to do.

There is no doubt the question of whether Australia should allow same-sex couples to be part of the wonderful institution of marriage is polarising. But rather than dividing political parties, communities, families and friends, it has the capacity to bring them together. It’s simplistic and inaccurate to label those who back same-sex marriage a “politically correct minor­ity”. Many of us come from the conservative side of politics and on all other issues are derided as reprehensible dinosaurs by those who embrace political correctness.

Jeff Kennett: Let’s lighten up and end this gay marriage discrimination

Jeff Kennett: Let’s lighten up and end this gay marriage discrimination

IT is said 4.5 per cent of the community are gay. They are not terrorists, but in the main law-abiding citizens.

We should fear terrorists and be prepared to use the full force of the law against them as they ignore our laws to cause harm. But sexuality is not something we choose, it is something we are born with. So why should we deny those who love each other, regardless of their sex, the right to marry?

Two issues have been aired over the past week. Firstly, that the government, if re-elected, will quickly hold a plebiscite so the public can decide whether people of the same sex can marry.

Parnell McGuinness: Same Sex Marriage ‘yes’ campaign could lose if mismanaged

Parnell McGuinness: Same Sex Marriage ‘yes’ campaign could lose if mismanaged

Australians who have not yet made up their minds on same-sex marriage are now embarking on a “journey” which many politicians only recently completed. It looks like most will arrive at the same destination, but without the whiff of political expediency.