FEDERAL Labor MPs may have to vote along party lines on the gay marriage debate, depending on an outcome at the party's national conference.
And it is a move Labor MP and shadow health minister Catherine King is worried will be a distraction from the bigger issue.
Labor has previously shown its support for gay marriage. In the lead-up to the ALP's federal conference in July, there has been a push for MPs to vote with party policy and not allow a conscience vote.
"It is a bit of an anomaly that there is a conscience vote on this issue," Ms King told the ABC yesterday.
"I support gay marriage and will vote for marriage equality if asked again in the parliament and I think at some point we will have that in this country.
"But I am also a bit worried that this idea about not having a conscience vote might distract from the overall issue."
She said they would leave it for the national conference to have the debate.
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