Same-sex marriage laws back on agenda

TASMANIAN politicians are likely to be debating same-sex marriage legislation again within six months.

Greens leader Nick McKim and Premier Lara Giddings are intent on reintroducing the private members' bill, which was blocked by the Legislative Council last year, eight votes to six.

Mr McKim would not specify a date, but said: ``it is our intention to bring it back in for debate in the upper house in the first half of this year''.

Many are tipping that it won't happen until after Legislative Council elections in May.

Legislative Council President Sue Smith opposes same-sex marriage, but will not be recontesting her seat of Montgomery. The other two MLCs up for re-election, Jim Wilkinson and Liberal Vanessa Goodwin, also voted against the legislation.

``I think the debate needs to happen again, and the upper house needs to be given another opportunity to stop this discrimination,'' Mr McKim said.

``There is a really important upper house election coming up. 

``The balance of the upper house was very close and one or two seats changing hands could certainly change the make-up of the upper house and potentially deliver a majority of progressive members unlike what we currently have.''

Ms Giddings said last week that she was inspired to reinvigorate the debate after the House of Commons in Britain passed same-sex marriage legislation.

Save Marriage Coalition spokesman Guy Barnett said the debate had been had in state and federal parliaments, and it was time to move on.

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