Malcolm Turnbull says he is looking forward to seeing US rapper Macklemore sing his “gay anthem” at the NRL grand final this weekend, as Peter Dutton argued a song promoting the No campaign should also be played.
The prime minister has also reminded people that Village People performed the YMCA at the 1991 NRL grand final in Sydney.
The immigration minister, Peter Dutton, weighed into the bizarre controversy surrounding Macklemore’s right to sing his hit song Same Love, which promotes same-sex marriage, at the NRL grand final.
Dutton said the National Rugby League was setting a worrying precedent by allowing an inherently political song to be played to the crowd this weekend, suggesting the NRL would only truly be supporting free speech if it allowed a song promoting the no campaign’s message to be played as well.
“I am into free speech … presumably two songs should be played, one for gay marriage and one against gay marriage,’’ Dutton reportedly said in London this morning.
Dutton’s intervention comes after Tony Abbott, Liberal senator Eric Abetz and One Nation leader Pauline Hanson all called for the NRL on Thursday to prevent Macklemore performing the song this weekend, saying sport and politics should never be mixed.
Turnbull said on Friday that it was a question of respecting the artist.
“What’s the problem?” he said. “Honestly, I don’t think trying to censor the playlist at halftime entertainment is – it’s certainly not my role. I look forward to it.”