Abbott disappointed in himself
Tony Abbott has said he feels disappointed in himself for saying in a TV interview four years ago he felt "a bit threatened" by gays.
In a 60 Minutes interview last night the Leader of the Opposition re-visited his remarks with the same interviewer, Liz Hayes.
He blamed his use of the word "threatened" on the "tough times" his family was going through with the coming out of his sister Christine Forster.
"The cohesion of my family was threatened at that time, but I'm pleased to say we're all in a better space now than we were then," Abbott said.
Forster has admitted she was disappointed by Abbott's former remarks but also "taken aback".
"It doesn't really reflect what I know of my brother," she said.
Australian Marriage Equality national convenor Rodney Croome said he was disappointed Abbott still refuses to endorse same-sex marriage and continues to refuse his MPs a conscience vote on the matter.
"You can't draw lines around other people's humanity by accepting who they are but rejecting their fundamental human rights," Croome said.
"Tony Abbott cannot say he truly accepts his lesbian sister, Christine, until he has also accepted Christine's partner, Virginia, as her wife and his sister-in-law."
"If Tony Abbott is sincere in his support for family values he will follow the example of UK Prime Minister, David Cameron, and support these values for same-sex couples as well," Croome added.
Marriage equality was recently endorsed by the federal Young Liberals and has received support from prominent coalition MPs such as Malcolm Turnbull and Barnaby Joyce., NSW Premier Barry O'Farrell and WA Premier Colin Barnett.