Image: Sky News
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has reportedly called a special party room meeting next week to address the lingering-yet-unresolved issue of marriage equality.
Liberal MPs will meet in Canberra at 4pm on Monday before Parliament returns from the winter break, with National Party members believed to be excluded from the discussion, the Herald Sun reports.
Earlier today, Mr Turnbull said any issue could be raised by the Liberal party room amid rumours a secret ballot could be used to canvass the position of party members.
“But, of course, ultimately Coalition policy is determined in the Coalition party room,” he said.
Queensland MP Warren Entsch – a supporter of marriage equality – claims Liberals were “ambushed” in 2015 when ex-PM Tony Abbott infamously invited Nationals meeting on the issue.
“Instead of being ambushed and deceived, I trust this prime minister to do the right thing and give us an opportunity to have a fair hearing on this,” Mr Entsch said.
It comes as West Australian Senator Dean Smith is said to be working on a marriage equality bill which carries the support of Mr Entsch, Trevor Evans and Tim Wilson.
Mr Entsch said the Nationals would be free to disagree with the outcome of the meeting, with a joint-party room meeting thought to still be going ahead on Tuesday.