Australia's most influential Catholic cleric has claimed that a “yes” vote for same-sex marriage has no real majority.

The Australian government spent $122 million on surveying Australian attitudes on marriage equality. Earlier this month, the government announced the results of its two-month postal survey. An overwhelming majority (61.6%) of respondents voted “yes” to a change in the law. The day after the results were announced, a marriage equality bill was introduced in the Australian Senate.

(Related: Australian Senator introduces gay marriage bill.)

Sydney Archbishop Anthony Fisher claimed that because 20 percent of eligible Australians “abstained altogether,” actual support for marriage equality is only about 49 percent.

“While people are talking about overwhelming support, it's still not clear that it is overwhelming,” Fisher said.

“What is clear is we are very divided over this issue and probably many others. The consensus in Australia is somewhat fractured.”

Fisher called on lawmakers to protect the views of religious organizations opposed to such unions.

Clint McGilvray, spokesman for the Equality Campaign, called the bishop's comments “disappointing,” adding that under his logic only 30.5 percent of Australians voted “no.”

“It is disappointing that Bishop Fisher is the only No case leader ungraciously refusing to accept the result,” McGilvray said.