SENATOR THE HON PENNY WONG

LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION IN THE SENATE

SHADOW MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS

LABOR SENATOR FOR SOUTH AUSTRALIA

TRANSCRIPT

16 November 2018

THE PROJECT

TOPIC: MARRIAGE EQUALITY PLEBISCITE

E&OE - PROOF ONLY

WALEED ALY: Senator Penny Wong was one of the Yes campaign’s most passionate voices and she joins us now.

Penny, we’ve got some footage here now. Looking at you, this is the moment of the announcement as you are waiting to hear what the verdict of the Australian people was. Can you tell us what you were thinking? What was going through your head at that moment?

SENATOR PENNY WONG, LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION IN THE SENATE: I always kind of wince a little when I see that footage. I hadn’t slept much so I suppose a year on I slept more last night than I did at this time last year. I think it was a feeling of relief wasn’t it?

CARRIE BICKMORE: I was going to say Penny, why do you wince? Because I see that and I just want to jump through the screen and stand with you. What makes you feel like you want to wince when you see that?

WONG: It’s a moment of a lot of emotion, and it’s a private moment isn’t it? As I said to Sophie when I came back to the office. I rang her and she said “we won” and I said “yes we did, but I think I just cried in front of about a million people” which she hadn’t seen yet.

PETER HELLIAR: Penny, I have a family member who is gay, and I know it meant a lot to her when the figures came through. You could actually see the percentage of people who voted Yes/No in your area and overwhelmingly people in her area had voted Yes and that meant a lot that she was surrounded by, without really knowing it before, she was surrounded by support I guess.

WONG: That’s right. It was a profoundly important statement about equality, about acceptance and about inclusion. And yes it’s great that people have got married, it’s great that legal right was extended, but I think the most important thing was it said something very important about community and that we belong.

BICKMORE: Penny have you popped the question yet?

WONG: Ho ho..(laughs) I’m going to talk to you about that on national television?

BICKMORE: Why Not? It feels like the perfect place to do it? (laughs)

ALY: Thank you very much for joining us.

WONG: Thank you for your continued interest in this area. I know this show has been one of the forums where this issue over a long time has been aired so good on you.

ALY: Thanks so much Penny.

Authorised by Noah Carroll, ALP, Canberra.