FEDERAL Member for Mallee, Andrew Broad will fulfil his duty to his constituents and vote to support marriage equality, despite believing changes to the Marriage Act "will rob the future children of Australia for generations to come".
House of Representatives politicians have spent this week debating a bill that would alter the Marriage Act to enable same-sex couples to marry.
An Australian Bureau of Statistics-run survey, conducted earlier this year, revealed that out of the 12,727,920 people who returned their Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey forms before the November 7 deadline, 61.6 per cent supported changing the law to allow same-sex couples to marry.
The margin between those who supported changing the Marriage Act and keeping the status quo was much closer within the Mallee electorate, with 54.3 per cent of the 78,290 registered voters who returned survey forms supporting change.
Although backing the government's decision to hold the survey - which it took to the 2016 election, Mr Broad said in parliament on Tuesday that politicians should stay out of what happens in people's homes.
"My considered judgement is that the government of Australia should at most times stay out of the homes of Australians except in the interest of protecting from violence or offence against individual family members such as abuse of children or violence against a partner," he said.
"Love between a man and a woman, a woman and a woman, and a man and a man can be as equally real in feelings and emotions. Who you love is a decision for you, but my belief is in upholding the ideal of the family in a world full of people who make mistakes and in a world full of less than perfect people, of whom I am one."
However, Mr Broad said in enabling same-sex couples to marry, it will rob children of 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: to tell her she is beautiful and that she is worthwhile and precious in his sight," he said.
"Between the ages of 10 and 14, as her body changes, she needs her mum. Frankly, that's a journey best walked with a woman.
Between the ages of 14 and 18, the role of a dad is to take her on a date, open the door for her, teach her how a guy should treat her - with respect - and be a guard from guys who might come knocking, while ensuring that their intentions are pure."