MEMBER for Mallee Andrew Broad has announced he will vote in favour of legalising same-sex marriage, despite believing the move would disadvantage children and weaken society.
Mr Broad spoke about the issue in parliament on Tuesday, as politicians debated changes to the Marriage Act.
He said he had promised Mallee residents that he would vote in line with their views on marriage as determined by the postal plebiscite.
In the plebiscite, 54.5 per cent of residents were in favour of same-sex marriage.
“Therefore, I feel duty-bound to vote 'yes',” he said.
However, Mr Broad said children should be raised by both a man and a woman.
”I do not cast judgement upon same-sex couples that are currently raising children,” he said.
“But I believe there is an essential truth that cannot be replicated without the influence of both a man and a woman in a child's development.
“A young girl between the ages of zero and five craves the nurturing abilities and closeness of her mother, and between the ages of five and 10 the positive influence of her dad is essential.”
Mr Broad said while he commended single parents, nothing replaced the ideal of marriage between and man and a woman.
“Ultimately, I believe changing the definition of marriage from a union of a man and a woman to the union of two people both weakens this ideal and weakens our society,” he said.
“I will personally find fulfilling my duty to the people of Mallee by voting yes difficult, as I believe this change will rob the future children of Australia for generations to come, but I will fulfil my duty.”