A controversial bid to change Tasmania's anti-discrimination laws and create exceptions for religious views has failed, a result hailed by the state's gay and lesbian rights group.
An amendment bill to alter the act, put forward by the Liberal government, was on Thursday voted down 7-4 in the state's upper house.
The government had spruiked the changes, saying they would enable church groups to convey their views on issues like same-sex marriage without the fear of being reported to the anti-discrimination commissioner.
It proposed to add the phrase "religious purposes" to a list of exceptions which already includes "academic", "artistic", "scientific" and "research purposes".
But Tasmanian Gay and Lesbian Rights Group spokesman Rodney Croome said the result of the vote was welcome, as changes would have opened the door to hate speech.
"LGBTI Tasmanians will breath a sigh of relief that this retrograde push to weaken our anti-hate laws has been voted down," he said.
"With hate campaigns likely during a marriage equality postal vote, this is the very worst time for parliament to give hate a green light."
Labor, which voted against the bill, said the laws already did enough to protect free speech.
However, Liberal acting attorney-general Matthew Groom fired back, saying the amendments were "reasonable".
"The changes would have struck the right balance between providing protection from discrimination and unlawful conduct, while still allowing for responsible public debate," he said.
Parliamentary debate on the bill was due to start in April but was delayed.
Mr Groom said the government would consider their position and announce a policy ahead of an expected March election.
Tasmania Greens leader Cassy O'Connor described the vote as a win for a "just, fair, kind Tasmania".