Trent Zimmerman becomes first openly gay member of the House of Representatives
Liberal party member Trent Zimmerman has become the first openly gay member of the House of Representatives, winning yesterday’s federal by-election in North Sydney.
Zimmerman received 47.6 per cent of counted votes managing to secure the seat despite a swing of 13 percent against the Liberal party.
The by-election was triggered following the resignation of former treasurer Joe Hockey. North Sydney has been a safe Liberal seat for over 20 years.
Zimmerman is the current acting president of the Liberal Party and a former staffer of the ex-treasurer.
As the first openly gay member of the Lower House, Zimmerman acknowledged the significance of the moment.
"I know that tonight in some ways is a very historic moment for the Australian Parliament and I'm very cognisant of that fact," he said.
During his speech, Zimmerman also re-pledged his support for marriage equality.
"I would have supported a free vote and preferred it to be decided by the parliament," he told media. "But that's the path we are going to go down so I will be strongly advocating, both in North Sydney and more broadly, a 'yes' vote for that plebiscite."
Australian Marriage Equality has congratulated Zimmerman on his appointment and continued support for equal love.
Australian Marriage Equality national director, Rodney Croome, said,
"We applaud Mr Zimmerman and his party on this win. The Liberal Party has delivered the House of Representatives its first openly gay member and another 'yes' vote for marriage equality"
"We are now just a handful of votes away from a majority in support of marriage equality in both the House of Reps and Senate. Our Parliament is on track to be able legislate for marriage equality without needing a costly plebiscite.
"Australian Marriage Equality looks forward to working with Mr Zimmerman to ensure all Australians can to marry the person they love in the country they love.”