CANBERRA, July 11, 2011 ( – The Australian Senate has voted down a motion by the Green Party that called on the federal government to support same-sex “marriage.”

The motion was put forward by Green Senator Sarah Hanson-Young, who told the Senate that Prime Minster Julia Gillard and Opposition Leader Tony Abbott, both of whom oppose any amendment to the Marriage Act 1961, were out of step with community attitudes on same-sex “marriage.”

“The prime minister and the opposition leader are, of course, entitled to their personal views, but I do not believe they should be imposing their views on the rest of the community on this issue,” she told the Senate on July 6th.

Hanson-Young added that a same-sex “marriage” vote should be on conscience rather than along party lines.

The motion was defeated in a vote of 31 to 9, with only the Senate’s nine Greens voting in favor of it.

Hanson-Young’s motion, available starting on page 32 of July 6th Hansard, pointed to gay “marriage” legislation in the U.S. and other countries, and claimed that “Australia is one of only a few democratic nations that does not provide same-sex couples with equal marriage rights.”

However, Rev. Fred Nile, the leader of the Christian Democratic Party, accused the Greens of having “lied” “when they claimed only a few democratic nations retain traditional heterosexual marriage.

“In fact only 9 nations out of 148 have legalized same sex homosexual ‘marriage,’” said Rev. Nile, MLC, in a press release.

Last November, Parliament passed a Green Party motion calling on MPs to consult their constituents about homosexual “marriage.” Another motion was passed in the House of Representatives on July 5 calling for the results of the consultations to be presented in mid-August.

Media reports indicate that the Labor Party is to discuss the issue at their National Conference in December.