Richard Di Natale: [tactic; torture; parliamentarian; espouse; backbencher; languish;] Simple answer is Parliament should deal with it. Tony Abbott had a chance to drag the country into the twenty first century and end discrimination, to end prejudice, and he used every tactic in the book to block it, to continue to support prejudice and discrimination in marriage, to not recognise the love between two people is love, regardless of their gender or their sexuality. He stacked his party room with national MPs. He has now come up with this tortured position. It might be plebiscite. It might be a referendum. No, we just should have Parliament deal with this. We could have this done so quickly. We could have this done this week. We could have a bill before the parliament supported by majority of parliamentarians. If Tony Abbott did what he espouses and that is to respect the freedom and liberty of his own backbenchers and allow them a free vote, and he won't do it. He won't do it and it's part of the reason that he is languishing in terms of public support because he is a man stuck in the past. He belongs to another century and the sooner the Liberal party change their prime minister, I think the country will be better for it.
Richard Di Natale: [mess around with; hell bent on; engineer; ] Well, we shouldn't have a referendum because that deals with the Constitution, you don't need to mess around with the Constitution on this issue. We've said, look, if the prime minister is absolutely hell bent on a plebiscite and that's the only way we are going to get this reform through, then it has to be at this selection, and it has to be the parliament that sets the question. Because he will engineer this in a way that it does not get up much like the referendum that we had as you remember on the republic, we can not let the prime minister make a captain's call on this. I just think we should have a vote of the parliament. We could get it done so quickly and move on.
(in the British and certain other parliaments) a member who sits in the rows of seats at the back, and who does not have an important position in the government or the opposition.
1. to waste time in an unproductive or aimless manner;
2. to interfere or meddle in something;