Everybody but the mentally impaired realise that the concept of a same sex marriage plebiscite was simply a subterfuge developed by the religious nutters in the Liberal-National Coalition to put off the legislation allowing same-sex marriage as long as possible. Once Malcolm Turnbull ousted the buffoon, Tony Abbott, from the prime ministership, there was some hope among the populace that this stupidity would be jettisoned. However, that hope was soon dashed, when it became clear that Turnbull had made a deal with some of the right wing of his party, to keep the plebiscite, as long as they voted for him in the leadership spill. Despite this, many people expected that, given time, the plebiscite would be dropped and the parliamentarians would actually do what they were elected to do and make a decision. All it needs is for the LNP to allow a free vote of its parliamentarians. That is a very simple process, but it was avoided at all costs by Abbott, and is now being avoided by Turnbull. The former believes that the sky will fall if same-sex marriage is permitted, while the latter is too gutless to say what he thinks, let alone do anything about it.
Same-sex marriage was effectively allowed to be legal in Australia until the Howard government amended the Marriage Act (1961) in 2004 to prevent any state or territory legalising it. The Howard government did not see the need to have a plebiscite to change the Marriage Act. Nor did the Howard government see fit to ask Australians whether they should invade Afghanistan and later, Iraq. These would seem on the surface significantly more important events, perhaps more worthy of a plebiscite.
It is clear that the religious right of the Liberal and National parties have Turnbull in a squirrel grip and they will not let go. Being religious, they know what is best for everyone and how we all should lead our lives. I hope this continues as it will make the Liberal-National Coalition almost unelectable and give them a long time in the wilderness, which will be good for the nation.