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Francis Maude: Tories must back equal marriage or risk becoming ‘unelectable’

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  1. I never thought I would ever support Francis Maude. But thank you very much for your honesty in this issue, Mr Maude.

    We need to step up the campaign for equal marriage with vigour and sustain it.

    1. good greif

      Find any polyps up there?

  2. It’s actually quite heartening to see how attitudes are changing in unexpected quarters.

    An Australian friend of mine, a dyed-in-the-wool Labor supporter (and may I remind you, they’re saddled with the unspeakable Julia Gillard), can hardly believe what’s going on in the UK at the moment, what with the Times‘s recent editorial and all.

    1. It’s also interesting to see where opinions are failing to change – ie. Michael White assistant editor of the Guardian of all things!

      http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/blog/2012/mar/05/gay-marriage-noisy-bishops

      1. Blimey. Thumbs down to him!

  3. Craig Denney 7 Mar 2012, 1:00pm

    This story was on Sky News press review last night and he is saying that the Nasty Party needs to change if they ever want to be re-elected.

    So if they give concessions to the religionists like allowing them not to have marriages in ‘all’ the churches then they will still be the un-electable Nasty Party.

    1. Am I reading it right that you think individual churches should be forced by Law to marry gay couples even if it’s against their beliefs?! If so your opinion is nearly as fascist as Cardinal O’briens!!! Lunatic.

      1. Craig Denney 7 Mar 2012, 1:20pm

        Well that’s what he is saying!

        1. I thought the principle of secularism was freedom from religion and freedom of religion!

          The state shouldn’t be able to force their marriage laws on the church and the church shouldn’t be able to force their rules on the state. Anything else is somewhat fascist.

          1. Robert in S. Kensington 7 Mar 2012, 1:37pm

            The state most definitely is NOT forcing its marriage laws on the church. That has been crystal clear as it has been for a religious component for Civil Partnerships. The marriage equality consultation will emphasise over and over that no religious denomination would be expected to recognise or be compelled to officiate a same-sex civil marriage.

            Well done, Francis Maude and thank you! He’s echoing what I have been saying. If the Tory party doesn’t support it, it may well lose the election in 2015. It needs every gay vote it can muster having only narrowly won the last election without a mandate. The Tory opponents in the House of Lords had better take note if they want their party to win, whether they agree with marriage equality or not. Sometimes pragmatism is necessary and in this case, mandatory.

        2. I think he just wants all Tory MPs to support marriage equality

          1. robert, I will not, get involved in the pros and cons of what Maude is going to say. How I do wish you would read your words again in the first paragraph, cause to me they read like a licence to disaster
            “over that no religious denomination would be expected to recognise or be compelled to officiate a same-sex civil marriage.”
            If a denomination is given and opt out clause of the kind you imply, Namely “recognise”, There will more Bulls the length and breadth of the country, say what, I leave the thought to yourself.

      2. Sister Mary Clarence 7 Mar 2012, 2:11pm

        Damien – maybe you could talk us through why the Christian (and Catholic church) decided to stop marrying gay people a few centuries ago, after having done so for for over a millennium and a half?

        If it is an affront to God and a corruption of the sanctity of marriage, can you explain why they did it for over 1700 years without realising it was wrong?

        All the bishops and arch-bishops jumping on the anti-gay band wagon at the moment are all fully aware that the Christian (including Catholic) church carried out same-sex weddings since the birth of their religion – they are banking on the rest of us being too stupid to realise.

        1. I’m not commenting on the morality of whether Churches should or should not choose to bless gay marriages (I think they should), but merely that the state should not have any power to force them to do so. Just as the Church should not have the power to tell the state who they can and cannot recognise as eligible for marriage, or to tell any other religion or sect for that matter.

          1. Craig Denney 7 Mar 2012, 4:14pm

            I think when these churches don’t agree to hold gay marriages they should loose the hundreds of millions of pounds in funding they receive each year from the state.

          2. Sister Mary Clarence 7 Mar 2012, 6:49pm

            The point is though Damien they have chopped and changed the word of God as and when it has suited them.

            There is no ‘religious’ grounds for them holding the current position, so they are a service provided like any other and should be held to the same rules.

          3. Personally I don’t see why churches should be exempt from equality laws. What if a Church said gay people can’t attend services?

            If the state allows churches to be “licensed” to marry people, they should have to do it in accordance with the laws of the land.

            However, one step at a time. That particular issue can wait till after we have civil marriage.

  4. Mike Homfray 7 Mar 2012, 1:00pm

    I’m not a Tory and never will be but it takes someone with principles to admit that he got his wrong.

    If only ms Gillard in Australia would do the same – she’d be one of a very small minority in our Labour party, whose MP’s will overwhelmingly support marriage equality

  5. Maude is simply voicing the classic Tory doctrine (which La Thatcher and her spiritual heirs have generally undermined) that the gaining and holding of power must be the supreme priority of Toryism, and that any idea or policy which obstructs this must be abandoned. It remains to be seen whether this shall also be the fate of laissez-faire capitalism. The fact that the other two parties are also in thrall to it is not at present encouraging. But good on Maude for this.

    1. Benjamin Cohen 7 Mar 2012, 1:18pm

      I don’t think this argument true in this case. Perhaps with a different political leader. Francis really does believe in LGBT rights and has often stuck his neck out for it, even when it didn’t win him support.

      1. It is perfectly possible for Maude genuinely to believe in lgbt rights and to look to maintaining the power and influence of his party at the same time.

        1. In fairness, I should think the gaining and holding of power is the main priority of most politicians and political parties.

        2. Riondo. I think you will find that ALL politicians and all parties would look to maintain power at all times and Labour are no different on that front. Having grown up during the Thatcher years I am finding it difficult to accept that there are some decent Tories out there. Gosh I actually said it!. And agree with Ben, Francis Maude is genuinely commited to the LGBT agenda for equality.

          1. Craig Denney 7 Mar 2012, 4:06pm

            I agree with John, “Having grown up during the Thatcher years I am finding it difficult to accept that there are some decent Tories out there”

            There is a saying about whether a Leopard can change it’s spot’s. Is there anybody in the Cabinet who is not religious? I think call me Dave will cave into religious pressure and give concessions to them.

          2. The tendency has always been more more marked in modern times among Conservatives until the Thatcher era. Before then it was typically Labour and the old Liberals who seemed to prefer ‘principle to power.’ Her long tenure in power entrenched Right-wing ideology in the party and gave them the dangerous delusion that they could never lose. It condemned them to 13 years of opposition after 1997 and a current inability to win a parliamentary majority even against so unpopular a Prime Minister as Brown. The problem now is that all the major parties are the hand-maidens of big business and the entire spectrum of politics is on the right. Political pragmatism on the part of (any) politicians can now only be prodded by a general and active rejection by the public of the prevailing global economic system. But we, of course, digress.

      2. From the “impartial”owner.

        Ben you’re doing a murdoch. stop it!

        1. The owner of Pink News has not claimed to be impartial on gay equality issues

        2. Surely Ben is entitled to his observations as much as the rest of us?

          1. In an editorial he can say what he likes. This must be LGBTory cause I didn’t read any comments on this story last week http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2012/03/01/mp-brands-equal-marriage-rights-for-gays-completely-nuts/

    2. theotherone 7 Mar 2012, 1:49pm

      all political parties are interested in gaining and maintaining power.

    3. Sister Mary Clarence 7 Mar 2012, 2:22pm

      You might want to research Francis Maude’s position and his much publicised reasons for being so pro-gay before making transparently incorrect statements.

      1. Well said, Sister

        His experience is remarkable.

        For those who do not know, they could try reading this story:
        http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/4696236.stm

        1. He dosen’t care about you he’s mourning his brother

          1. sweeping statement springs to mind

  6. If he was saying we need to change our ideas because its morally wrong to discriminate against tax paying law abiding citizens i would applaud him…hes not- hes saying we need to be nice to the gays until we get elected, which is frankly cynical.

    1. I think it’s called political manoeuvring – he’s using every weapon in his arsenal to get as many Tory MPs on his side. It’s cynical but entirely rational and I don’t blame him for using this argument as well as the moral one.

    2. A cynical welcome to his statement is therefore appropriate

    3. Go and read PinkNews earlier interview with him. He really does think that discriminating against gay people is morally wrong. It’s not just political expediency.

      1. hes been an mp since 1983, hes had plenty of time to say these things when the tories have had a big majority….

  7. On gay partnerships, he added: “For me its all to do with family values it is better for society that we should recognise those couples who wish to make a long term commitment to share responsibilities. It’s about strengthening our society.

    The way this debate is heading is

    gay couple = good
    single gay people = danger

    divide and conquer

    1. Have gone away to read more about Maude and the more detail I read about his opinion about LGBT issues and the impact of nursing his brother dying from HIV, the more I realise that he strongly and unhesitatingly supports LGBT rights. He has principles and will stand up for them. I do not support all his political views but on this matter, he is clearly a man of integrity and honour. I applaud him.

      1. So he doesn’t care about me just his dead brother. Must be it’s guilt not acceptance

        1. Sister Mary Clarence 8 Mar 2012, 12:15am

          To be fair mate, you’re a difficult person to like

          1. I don’t live my life to be liked. I’d rather be respected

          2. Sister Mary Clarence 8 Mar 2012, 10:30am

            …. or respected ….

    2. As an out-and-proud single person I sort of know what you mean, but then non-gay single people are in much the same boat too so I don’t think there’s anything particularly anti-gay about it.

      1. so let’s copy the worst that society has to offer and marginalise single LGBT people.

        how progressive, we are no longer setting trends we follow them like sheep

        1. Oh, I think you’re getting a little carried away – I’m perfectly capable of being single and content, and even though others I know sometimes struggle, I’d much rather that than penalise those who want to be coupled/married out of some form of fairly obscure principle.

          1. You miss my point. I want equality for all of us. Not just the couples who get married.

            For me its all to do with family values it is better for society that we should recognise those couples who wish to make a long term commitment to share responsibilities

            So single people will be seen as second class LGBT. When Maude says all LGBT people are equal I will beleive he actually care rather than being pragmatic about power

          2. Fair enough, but then the issue at hand that he’s commenting on is marriage which, obviously, is not something that involves people who remain single! As single gay men do we not already have equality in the UK?

    3. Mr. Ripley's Asscrack 7 Mar 2012, 4:43pm

      Yeah I was thinking that too. What exactly is the difference between a gay couple and 2 gay individuals?!

      1. divide and conquer. They say we will accept you as long as you conform. No overt displays of sexuality so no queers or freaks just dry ass Bree Vanderkamp types accepted.

        And you mugs are falling for it. I’ll be sucking cock on the heath as long as I can breath and kneel

        1. Some married gays will be doing it too, James!
          It’s not either or!

        2. People won’t judge you for sucking random cock in public places because you’re gay though, they’ll judge you for having sex in public and assuming you’re a bit of a whore. Not saying that’s right but it’s nothing to do with you being gay.

        3. Sounds like you need to get down to the heath and offload James! Seriously, sometimes the frothing anger in your comments is nearly as bad as that Keith fella. Divide and conquer? Bree Vanderkamp? single gay people=danger? wtf are you going on about? Chill out and find some love in your life.

          1. Yes I always take the advice of strangers.

            You may have noticed that you will only be accepted on their terms. So fit in and assimilate be the gay with the low profile.

  8. de Villiers 7 Mar 2012, 2:22pm

    I wish that the right in France were as liberal as the right in England.

    1. I wish the LEFT in America was as liberal as the RIGHT in England!

  9. Francis Maude is correct. Although I would go further.

    Anybody who does not support civil marriage equality is an extremist bigot and is best suited to be in the BNP. Civil rights equality is absolutely not up for debate.

    Sadly the Tories are showing since election that despite Callmedave’s apparent reasonableness, that extremist bigotry (of the BNP style) is part of the fabric of the Tory Party.

    When civil marriage equality comes to a vote (by the end of this year, thanks very much – we must also insist that hanging about unncessarily until 2015 is an utterly unacceptable delay to equality) that there will be party whip imposed and that any Tory neo-fascist who votes against marriage equality will be expelled from the party and therefore free to join the BNP where they belong).

    (Sort of joking – I suspect that hordes of Tory neo-fascist MP’s will vote against equality and that it will only succeed with Labour and Lib Dem support.

    1. Do Labour support us any more? Marriage equality is not their official party policy. Along with Ben Summerskill and Stonewall, they seem to be sulking that their flimsy CP’s have become so passe so quickly.

      1. Ben Summerskill made a huge error of judgement a couple of years back re marriage. If you have seen his media critques of the Coalition for Marriage and the RC church recently you will have seen he is now a staunch defender and proponent of marriage.

        Every candidate for the labour leadership election supports equal marriage. They should have done more re equal marriage but labour did equalise the age of consent and introduce many more pro gay policies. Historically labour MPs have a better voting record on LGBT issues than Conservative MPs. Few issues for the next election have an official policy, so complaining that labour do not have a policy on equal marriage is about as reasonable as complaining labour do not have a policy on News International. Its perfectly clear where they currently stand. The past could have been a lot better on News International and equal marriage, but their position on both now is undeniable.

        1. But Stu, as things stand (and this oh-so-British coalition looks like it is going to stay the course) the voting on marriage equality is going to happen before the next general election. The time for this is now. Yes, it does look as if Ben is back in the groove but I’m less than convinced about the Labour Party.

        2. Sister Mary Clarence 8 Mar 2012, 12:21am

          “Every candidate for the labour leadership election supports equal marriage”

          Yes, but they didn’t when it mattered when they held power.

          You talk of all the other aspects of equality that they did give us, but in reality its what they didn’t give us that is more telling. They didn’t give us anything Europe didn’t require them to give.

          Their hand was forced on every equality measure by Europe. Europe didn’t require full marriage equality, and so we didn’t get it.

  10. Walk the talk and I’ll change my opinion.

  11. Has PinkNews been in touch with the LGBTory to ask of they support the expulsion from the Tory Party of MP’s who oppose civil marriage equality.

    Surely LGBTory think that people opposed to civil rights have no place in the Tory Party, and belong instead in the BNP.

    1. Theis site in right wing gay bollox

    2. should Labour MPs who are against same sex marriage also be expelled? Should David Blunkett be expelled from the Labour party for voting against an equal age of consent?

      1. Labour are not in power and therefore your analogy fails.

        Marriage equality (if it comes before the next election) will be introduced by the Tories and LibDems.

        I want a commitment that when civil marriage equality legislation is introduced (and again I would stress that this needs to happen this year – there is no justifiable reason to delay equality until 2015) that the Tories will apply a party whip and will expel any neo-fascist Tory MP who votes against equality.

  12. This is the right blend of electoral pragmatism and 21st century family values (encouraging committed relationships) to win over the Tory centre.

    Like it or not, the political arithmetic means we need these people to get this through in this Parliament – the numbers are with us but Cameron won’t push this through if the parliamentary party rises up against it. Expect to see more of this pro-monogamy line of argument on the equality side, as we saw in the Times editorial.

    I can live with the smug-married tone if this line of argument gets marriage equality passed.

  13. There is nothing inconsistent about the Tories or any right of centre party supporting LGBT rights. These parties claim to support individual freedom and small government. There is nothing “small government” about a government that seeks to prevent consenting adults from entering into legal civil marriage.
    It would be ludicrous for parties that claim to champion “choice” and freedom to ban same sex civil marriage.

  14. Ok, but wait a minute… He wants the Tories to change not because teh gays are right and equals, but because if Tories don’t change they will be unelectable? Let’s wait and see if he will tell his peers homosexuality and heterosexuality are equals…

    1. He wants the Tories to change because he realised they were wrong in the homophobic policies after spending time supporting his brother dying. His brother spend many hours explaining to him the damage that homophobia did to him. Maude recognises that this is a failure of his party, society and to an extent himself. He should be applauded for being a man of principles and acknowledging the errors and seeking to change them.

      1. Good, he is certainly seeking to voice his opinions, but after 20 long years after his brothers death, he only manages to associate homophobia to unelectiveness. The party should get rid of homophobes, but if they did that the party would be finished. So lonely opinions like this are still exceptionally rare in the nasty party…

        1. Sister Mary Clarence 7 Mar 2012, 6:53pm

          I think if you check matey, he’s been supporting gay equality for quite some time.

          As for his lonely opinions, its the Tory party proposing gay marriage – something your beloved Labour couldn’t stomach when in power …. although now they’ve lost it, they’re all over it …. strange that!

          1. Sure… if voting YES to section 28 is supporting gay equality…. if that makes you happy, that’s up to you. This man voted against his own brother just to keep sucking the conservative tits… go figure where his interests really lie…

          2. Did Francis Maude vote in favour of Section 28.

            If so then he is a disgusting, hate fillled pathetic scumbag who values his career over his own family.

            Shame on him – the useless w”nkst”!n

          3. @dAVID

            Sure voting for section 28 was wrong. No doubt about it.

            Actions of Martin McGuinness, Gerry Adams, Nelson Mandela and other politicians can also be shown to be historically wrong – but they change their minds and move on and seek to improve things. Is Maude not allowed to reflect and change his mind after experiencing long heart to hearts with his brother who died from HIV and suffered terrible homophobia. Is Maude not allowed to try and put it right? I think he is.

    2. The speech is to a policy think tank which only understands the language of political ‘shop’ (electability being core). If he made the case the gays were right and equals as you put it, his audience would undoubtedly start shifting about uncomfortably (I well remember getting this reaction from a panel who were interviewing me for a job in a hospital and I said I wanted to help people – when I changed tack and started talking about my career ambitions they stopped shifting about, cheered up, and eventually gave me the job!).

      1. Can you imagine a party considering civil rights for women and ethnic minorities, not because they believe these people should have civil rights, but because the party is becoming unelectable? CaMoron wouldn’t dare to sack party members associating themselves with homophobic organisations. Would he keep them if they were to associate themselves to racist or anti-semittic ones?

  15. Peter & Michael 7 Mar 2012, 4:37pm

    Well, if the Tories give us Equal Civil Same-Sex marriage as they promise to do, this will put us in parity with ‘traditional marriage’, Michael Portillo, in a book called ‘Pretty Straight Guys’ by Nick Cohen, published 2003, Quote, ‘ So conclusive was the triumph of Gay Rights, Michael Portillo and the modernising Conservatives insisted that Tories must promote them if they ever wanted to be elected again’. with reference to copyright of the Author: Nick Cohen. This is more than the Labour Party have given us, although Ed Miliband has recently signed his approval to the measure. We do not live in the past as many others do, the UK is joining other countries in accepting our Equality of Civil Marriage and my Civil Partner and I look forward to the time when sexuality is never questioned or need to be.

  16. Mr. Ripley's Asscrack 7 Mar 2012, 5:06pm

    Francis Maude is to be applauded for making the all right noises – but I realise that from previous tory governments, it’s more about what they aren’t saying, than what they actually do say. Remember Maude DID vote for Section 28, regardless of his gay brother (I mean, my heart bleeds for him and his sad loss – no one deserves to die from that disease – but to vilify the victims?!). Sorry but I really don’t think they have learned anything from that experience. (To all the negative thumbs: unless you lived through what it felt like to be gay in the 80s you really won’t have a clue…)

    1. It’s 2012 not 1980.

      Thatcher has been and gone.

      The coalition and most of the big hitters in the Conservative party have demonstrated that their policy is now pro-LGBT. To be frank, that some of them do this for electoral gain does not bother me. Some do it because they believe it is the right thing. Some also do it because they are gay.

      Mr Ripley, you often have some great things to say. I think your insinuation that anyone under the age of 40 doesn’t have a clue about a particular political party is unreasonable and a little arrogant. Firstly things were horrendous for LGBT people under the Thatcher/Major government. However, things were worse before 1967 (so one could use a similar argument to say that we should judge political parties now by the attitudes of the contemporaries of Harold WIlson – as that is when LGBT rights were really bad!). Its a nonsensical argument to judge Milliband by the period of Wilson. Equally its facetious to consider Cameron on Thatchers …

      1. … policies and horrendous policy. I would neither vote for Nick Clegg because of the actions of Asquith than I would not vote for Cameron because of the actions of Baldwin. So why should I judge the Conservatives and vote or not vote for them today on the basis of something that happened at least 2 decades ago.

        Whats important is what is happening now. Of course, we need to respect history, we need to learn from it. We need to respect the good and bad experiences that our contemporaries and those before us have had. However, as much as we learn from our own mistakes so can politicians and so can organisations.

        The UK is a very different place to what it was when Thatcher left power – much much different. A lot of it for the better, some of it not. Lets judge todays politicians on their promises and ability to keep them, their track record and their policies and effect – not on the policies of Brown, Blair, Major, Thatcher, WIlson, Churchill, Baldwin, or Asquith!

        1. If Francis Maude voted for section 28 despite having a gay brother then he is scum.

          No ifs, ands or buts about it.

          He voted against his own brother for his own career.

          That is unforgiveable.

          1. So many people were unwilling to listen to Sinn Fein because of their past … if we have the same approach to them and do not accept allies which were once enemies – we will never progress.

  17. Well, I lived through the 1980s and hated the Tories as much as anyone back then. I certainly never thought I would see the day when a Conservative cabinet minister would be championing marriage equality while the Labour Party cowered in the shadows on the issue, failing utterly as a party to endorse full civil rights for LGBTs.

    But people do change, and so do political parties. Callmedave, Francis Maude, Margot James, and LGBTory are to be congratulated and supported for their efforts on this issue.

    There IS a lot more support for LGBTs amongst the younger generation of Tories. In my own area, LGBTs invited one of our local Tory MPs – big-time ‘in yer face’ Christian to boot – to a local pride party within weeks of her winning the seat. Nobody expected her to turn up but she did, with a big, bubbly, screaming queen (Christopher Biggins type) as her guest. We all had such a great time!

    It’s the future folks! Bring it on Francis et al!

    1. Tremendously heartening to read this. We had the Reagan ’80s – and our generational shift seems to be going as you’ve described. But as it’s “sweepstakes/primary” season here in our neverending electoral process, our conservatives have gone “hard right” again.
      If your Tories can change, then there’s hope that our Republicans might, as well (and out of respect for Reagan, here’s also hoping that they do it before Maggie Thatcher’s proper dead).

    2. Actually LGBTory are to be condemned for the useless, ineffective quisling Uncle Toms that they are.

      Whenever a Tory MP or minister engages in a homophobic outburst (which happens on average once a month), the silence of LGBTory is deafening.

      LGBTory are a PR effort, approved by Tory Party HQ, but who are foirbidden to hold any opnions not approved by party HQ.

      LGBTory really is an utterly useless group.

  18. In other News of the Obvious: “Earth Declared ‘Roundish’ by Tories.”
    And the UK still seems a decade ahead of the USA.
    *sigh*

    1. Well, virtually ALL the Tories were Flat Earthers not so long ago, so it’s definitely progress, albeit slower than we would like. The Tories also have more ‘out’ MPs than all the other parties put together, even if they still have a few dinosaurs as well. Significantly, Cameron is making the right noises, apparently genuinely.

      And the USA is also making slow but steady progress with a fifth of the states offering marriage equality, with New York being the flagship. If Obama gets re-elected then the Federal aspects could also improve significantly.

  19. This would, I think, be a very good evening to remember the late lamented Ian Harvey, a hero in more ways than one.

  20. @ Craig Denney “Is there anybody in the Cabinet who is not religious?”

    According to Wikipedia, religionists comprise only 12 out of 29, with 17 non-religious or undeclared.

    So the good news is that the religionists might well be in the minority !

    Cabinet Members who are not religious include Nick Clegg and Kenneth Clarke.

    There is no declaration for George Osborne, Philip Hammond, Vince Cable, Ed Davey, Eric Pickles, Andrew Mitchell, Owen Patterson, Michael Moore, Cheryl Gillan, Jeremy Hunt, Danny Alexander, Lord Strathclyde, Francis Maude, David Willetts and Sir George Young.

    Religionists include David Cameron, William Hague, Theresa May, Iain Duncan Smith, Andrew Lansley, Michael Gove, Justine Greening, Caroline Spelman, Baroness Warsi, Oliver Letwin, Patrick McLoughlin and Dominic Grieve.

    1. Peter & Michael 7 Mar 2012, 10:35pm

      As we understand William Hague has also been vocal in supporting gay rights here and abroad.

      1. Maybe

        But he also has an appallingly homophobic voting record and then it was discovered that he used to share a bedroom with a male ‘employee’ while on business abroad, the press started jokling about his sexuality.

        In a truly grotesque manner he started discussing the condition of his wife’s innards to explain why they were childless.

        Hague bettter not ever again in any type of homophobic voting.

        The gloves will come off if he does.

    2. I am certain Eric Pickles is an evangelical Christian and there are reports Jeremy Hunt regularly takes communion in the Westminster chapel after PMQ’s.

      The rest of them I have no idea about (although Vince Cable married his first wife in an African Catholic cathedral – so one might expect there to have been some element of Catholic observance at one stage at least).

  21. rodney green 7 Mar 2012, 10:10pm

    lot of tory bashing on here, remember it was thatchers government that decriminalised homosexuality in scotland back in 1980

    1. And it was Thatcher’s government who introduced Section 28 – you know that toxic piece of bigotted legislation, which in 2011 we are condemning St Petersburg for introducing their own version of.

      The Tories have the most appallingly bigotted and hate-filled record when it comes to LGBT rights.

      A few nice comments by Callmedave (who himself has a bigotted voting record on gay issues) does not alter the utter bigotry in the Tories’ very recent past.

      1. Checked the calendar today, dAVID …

        Checked who the Prime Minister is?

        Looked at the law in the UK recently?

        or stepped into a time machine?

        Its 2012, not 1980

        David Cameron is PM with a LibDem deputy PM.

        Section 28 does not exist in UK law.

        There are plans to introduce equal marriage.

        Making decisions based on issues from 20plus years ago is crazy. I don’t decide whether to vote on economic policies from 1980 so why should I consider LGBT policies from 1980 regardless of which party we are talking about.

    2. Equality Network 8 Mar 2012, 9:30am

      While that’s true, it was an amendment tabled by Labour’s Robin Cook, and against the background of a threatened case at the European Court of Human Rights, and that prosecutions for over 21s in private had stopped in Scotland in the mid 70s.

      It was in 1987 and 88 that the Thatcher Govt jumped on the anti-HIV, anti-gay bandwagon, used directly homophobic posters in their 87 election campaign, and brought in section 28. Still, that was a long time ago!

    3. Robert in S. Kensington 8 Mar 2012, 1:12pm

      And Labour in England in 1967 under Harold Wilson!

  22. What a wonderful man!

  23. For people saying its for votes well it is partly overall. But take into account his brother and its actually someone who gives a dam and can openly be accountable for their parties mistakes. More like him are needed. Regardless if there using us to win votes ( which is still risky and could lose them more than it could gain!) maybe its a two way street and its not like we wouldn’t get are returns. At least then I’d have the option to turn down marriage as opposed to not even being given the chance “)

    1. Francis Maude voted in favour of Section 28 despite knowing his brother was gay.

      Francis Maude is scum.

      He is allegedly ‘gay friendly’ for opportunistic reasons.

      But never forget that he was willing to vote against his own family for his own career advancement,

      1. Never forget that he changed his views when he understood the reality.

        People with principles change their minds about things when they see reality.

        The same could be said for people with principled views about politicians! Some peole prefer to live in the 1980s and see things that existed then and try to pretend they are exactly the same today – they are not

  24. Dr Robin Guthrie 8 Mar 2012, 8:00am

    I see that the Daily Terrorgraph is claiming that 70% oppose gay marriage in a recent poll.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/9129750/Poll-suggests-70pc-oppose-gay-marriage.html

    A poll I notice carried out by Catholics for Catholics and only 2004 respondents.

    How dare they claim this is representative,

    1. Well 61% of Christians in a recent poll support equal marriage, 70% of the general population

      Also, you can’t blame them for only using 2004 Catholic respondents – they probably couldnt find any more!

      1. Dr Robin Guthrie 8 Mar 2012, 9:32am

        The same story is running in the Scotsman and both have removed there comments sections.

        Strange how they do not want to offer people the chance to question this “poll”.

    2. Yes, very odd seeing that it contradicts the paper’s own online poll (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/conservative/9127505/Conservative-Party-must-back-gay-marriage-or-it-will-be-unelectable-Francis-Maude-to-warn.html).

      In answer to the question “Do you think that gay marriage should be legalised?”, 10.25% (4,292 votes) of respondents have (so far)answered “No – It would be too offensive for many religious people”; 11.86% (4,967 votes) have answred “No – And I think that even civil partnerships go too far”; 43.04% (18,029 votes) have answered “Yes – Gay people should have the same rights as everyone else”; and 34.85% (14,598 votes) have answered “Yes – Religious considerations have no place in a modern society”.

      I look forward to The Telegraph’s leading article on this poll!

    3. bobbleobble 8 Mar 2012, 9:58am

      The poll was carried out by ComRes, a proper polling outfit, I don’t think you can blame the outcome on the polling organistaion or the sample size, after all very few polls have more respondents than that. It’s disappointing although I think the results have more to do with the questions asked since at no point were people asked directly about their attitudes to gay people getting married.

  25. Debate about marriage equality on 10 O’Clock Live – with Boy George & a gay Catholic who opposes marriage

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