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Australian Minister Barnaby Joyce Thinks Gay Marriage Will Affect Cattle Exports

06/07/2015 15:45 BST | Updated 06/07/2015 15:59 BST
Stefan Postles via Getty Images
CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 26: Nationals Senator, Barnaby Joyce speaks to the media during a press conference at Parliament House on June 26, 2013 in Canberra, Australia. Joyce is running for the lower house seat of New England in New South Wales, which has been held by independent MP, Tony Windsor, who this morning announced his resignation. Joyce is likely to easily be elected to the seat now, and it is speculated that he will push for the leadership of the National Party - a move which would see him become Deputy Prime Minister if the coalition opposition is elected. (Photo by Stefan Postles/Getty Images)

Floods, incest, marrying dogs - all dangers that supposedly lie ahead with the legalisation of gay marriage. But now an Australian minister has issued the most bizarre warning of all - cattle exports could be affected.

Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce said on Sunday that the country’s Asian trading partners would see Australia as “decadent” if it were to allow people to marry regardless of gender.

Speaking to ABC network’s Insiders programme, Joyce agreed with Eric Abetz, Leader of the Government in the Senate, when he suggested that if Asian countries did not accept same-sex marriage then Australia should not either.

Joyce said: "Eric is right in saying where we live economically is south east Asia, that's where our cattle go.

"When we go there, there are judgments whether you like it or not that are made about us.

"They see us as decadent."

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When quizzed by the show’s host, Barry Cassidy, over whether embracing gay marriage would cause south east Asian nations to see Australia as “decadent”, Joyce replied: "I think that in some instances they would, yeah.”

He also went on to add that marriage was “inherently there for the support of… or the prospect of… or the opportunity of children".

Joyce’s comments were not well-received online…

Liberal MP Warren Entsch confirmed last week that he planned to introduce a private member's bill to the Australian parliament to legalise same-sex marriage, with cross-party sponsorship, next month.

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