Pyne Says Gay Marriage May Be "Sooner Than Everyone Thinks"
One of the Turnbull government's most senior ministers says legalising same-sex marriage in Australia could happen "sooner than everyone thinks".
Defence Industry Minister Christopher Pyne made the comment to a gathering of moderate Liberals before the party's federal council meeting in Sydney last Friday night, News Corp columnist Andrew Bolt reported on Monday.
"Friends, we are in the winner's circle but we have to deliver a couple of things and one of those we've got to deliver before too long is marriage equality in this country," Mr Pyne said, according to a recording obtained by Bolt.
"And your friends in Canberra are working on that outcome.
"It might even be sooner than everyone thinks."
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull went to last year's election with Tony Abbott's plan for a plebiscite on same-sex marriage.
But the Senate in November rejected legislation that would have allowed the national vote to take place.
Gay marriage has been off the government's agenda since.
Deputy Prime Minister and Nationals leader Barnaby Joyce, who is London, said he was focused on other issues, such as the trade mission he is about to undertake.
"I'm going to make sure that I'm concentrating on the issues that people who elected me want, which is to get the best return back through the farm gate," he told reporters after laying a wreath for London Bridge terror victims.
"What happens at dinners and other parts of Sydney is of no real consequence to me."