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In Australia: Guess who's coming to dinner?

February 21, 2012 | 11:50 am

Gay couples in Australia wanted to get the ear of the prime minister who opposes same-sex marriage. So they paid more than $33,000 to share her table.

The Australian activist group GetUp! bought dinner with Prime Minister Julia Gillard at a charity auction last year. The couples finally dined with Gillard on Tuesday at her official home in Canberra.

Beforehand, 12-year-old Matthew Miller gave Gillard flowers and letters from him and his younger brother, saying why they wanted their mothers to get married, the Associated Press reported.

“They're basically being called not normal and we're not known as a proper family,” the news agency quoted him as saying. 

Gillard told the couples that while she opposes gay marriage, she believes that it will inevitably become legal in Australia, the Sydney Morning Herald reported. Australian lawmakers have brought up three different bills to change an existing law that says only a man and a woman can marry.

GetUp! is known for playful activism. In its quest to legalize gay marriage, the group delivered more than 3,000 roses to Australian parliamentarians on Valentine's Day this year.

It also bought a surfing lesson with an Australian lawmaker who has raised worries about accommodating refugees, and used the opportunity to put him next to a former Afghan refugee.

The video above from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation shows the couples talking about gay marriage and their plans to dine with Gillard last fall, before the dinner date had been set.


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-- Emily Alpert in Los Angeles

Video: Gay couples who planned to dine with Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard talk about the issue of gay marriage. Credit: Australian Broadcasting Corporation