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Gay marriage advocates celebrate ahead of Australian vote

Gay marriage advocates celebrate ahead of Australian vote

Not all speeches backed gay marriage, however.

"The same-sex marriage bill will pass this week, there's no doubt in my mind about that, but we do need to have a sensible, mature discussion around where we can get those appropriate measures in place" to protect opponents' rights, Dutton told reporters.

This is the time frame more than 100 MPs had to share their thoughts on same-sex marriage in a speech to Queensland Parliament.

Media captionWill you marry me?

The Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Bill 2017 was passed with no changes to the one that was approved by the Senate last week.

The bill is expected to reach a final vote later on Thursday, after parliament considers a series of amendments from conservative government MPs and the Greens. Several amendments being proposed would expand those exemptions, but Dutton and other lawmakers expect all amendments would be rejected.

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Gay rights advocates have celebrated outside Australia's Parliament House in anticipation of same-sex marriage being legalized within hours.

The House of Representatives is widely expected to vote to allow same-sex marriage across the nation.

Mr Abbott said he moved the amendment "out of respect for the millions of Australians who take religious freedom seriously".

A nonbinding postal survey found that 62 percent of Australian respondents wanted gay marriage to be legal.

While marriage equality could become law this week, state marriage registries say they would not have the paperwork to proceed with weddings until January.

"Australians are sick of excuses and they're sick of delays", Entsch said.

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