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Tory MP Adam Afriyie: I voted against the same-sex marriage bill because it does not represent true equality

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  1. Jamie Caffiera 7 Feb 2013, 10:46am

    No Adam, you voted against it because you don’t want to see gay marriage. Anything else is an excuse.

    1. Steve Hedger 7 Feb 2013, 12:30pm

      I absolutely agree. His argument ‘that those who wish to form same-sex civil partnerships are treated equally under the law.” is horse sh1t. The point was that people weren’t asking to form same-sex civil partnerships, they were asking to marry in the same way they heterosexual couples could.

      He is where he is today, because years ago, members of parliament stood up in Westminster and determined that we would treat people of different skin colours equally. Had there been a few more people there with attitudes like his, Britain would be a very different place today, and I very much doubt he would be enjoying the privileged life he currently does.

    2. Walker Moore 7 Feb 2013, 12:49pm

      ..and/or he has political ambitions which he hopes will gain traction if he cozies up to bigoted Tory backbenchers.

      1. Well given his skin colour he’s making a big mistake as it is these very bigots who wouldn’t vote for him if he were the only candidate.

        Pull the ladder up now I’ve reached the top.

    3. WHAT A COPOUT . . .

      Many years ago opposite race / mixed marriages were illegal in the UK and the USA . . . my sister and brother-in-law, my uncle and aunt-in-law and other family members of mine would not have been allowed to marry.

      Shame on this Tory MP . . .

    4. He is an bigot like all the others who voted against and many are now trying to backtrack as they have now tainted , undesirable reputations, i looked up my local mp malcolm rifkind who voted against and he came with bigot attached on search engine. These mps who voted against civil/human rights are now labelled for life as bigots.

    5. Exactly, what a scumbag.

  2. He is an appallingly arrogant prat.

  3. Rob M. Lucas 7 Feb 2013, 11:07am

    In principle, the Bill is the right thing to do & can be tweaked at committee stage. So what’s his real reason for saying no?

    By saying “no” because “the bill does not represent equality,” MPs are effectively saying “I don’t even want to discuss further & work with this.”

    They try to close the door.

  4. Blah! Blah! Blah! Another very inventive excuse. How does it create two legal kinds of marriage? A marriage is a marriage whether its between man/woman man/man or woman/woman.

    And the argument that some churches will refuse to marry gay couples doesn’t hold water. Many churches refuse to marry divorced couples. So what! Then have a registry office or other venue for the wedding. The way homosexuals are being treated by the church I wonder any of them would choose to marry in church anyway.

  5. “A single form of state recognition” could be created at some point after this bill has been implemented. There is no reason to keep postponing equality?

  6. Tara Hewitt 7 Feb 2013, 11:11am

    I respect different peoples point of view this is a sensitively put point compared to some of the statements opposing equal marriage. Whilst I disagree with him I respect his view and the way he has put it. The way to engage and bring people on board is not to shoot them down and attack them.

    1. bobbleobble 7 Feb 2013, 11:24am

      I might agree with you if he had abstained or voted in favour on the basis that he wanted to work with the government at the committee stage to iron out the problems but he didn’t do that. He voted to kill the bill at the second reading stage. He doesn’t want to be on board, he wants the bill to vanish. I don’t for one minute believe that he is going to allow himself to be brought on board and his vote the other night evidences that.

    2. How can you “respect” a view that he himself negated a sentence after stating it. He said there shouldn’t be two forms of partnership recognition and then immediately said that the answer to the problem is to strengthen the SECOND form so that it’s more equal to the first. He exposed his “view” as being bogus and insincere. To respect that “view” is insane.

      Your name contains an anagram that you should avoid living up to.

    3. Is Adam Afriyie married to a woman?

      I know nothing about him but the image chosen for this stories pings ‘G-A-Y’ to me.

      If he is a closet case then he must be outed.

      But regardless of whether he is gay or not, he absolutely must not be re-elected.

      His homophobic bigotry renders him unsuitable for public office

  7. That There Other David 7 Feb 2013, 11:21am

    Mr Afriyie is either lying or he doesn’t understand that the path to equality occurs in small steps. Voting against a step does not make the destination come any closer.

    1. He’s a bigot.

  8. Craig Denney 7 Feb 2013, 11:23am

    He’s pandering to right-wingers in his party to try and become party leader, but David Cameron is on the progressive side and Adam will only be taking the Tories back to the stone age which will lose them future elections if he becomes leader.

  9. Mumbo Jumbo 7 Feb 2013, 11:23am

    His record shows that he has previously abstained on LGBT equality matters.

  10. Sounds like a poor excuse to me!

    I note that of his concerns the first one he mentions is churches! That makes me suspicious – that and the fact that his supposed objection isn’t backed up by what he says nor has he explained why it made him take the ANTI-equality step of voting ‘No’. Right because that’s *really* going to help inequality, isn’t it?!

    1. Interestingly similar church-based arguments were prayed in aid by those who sought to deny women the vote and to receive university degrees. Those positions now seem risible but there is an underlying attitude that survives which, to me, is based on notions of the true place of women as child bearers and chattels of their husbands and masters and of the true God-given order that takes precedence over everything else and which, coincidentally of course, buttresses masculine capitalist heteronormativity.

  11. Yes well let’s see how he votes when the Bill returns. BUT

    * the Bill allows church organisations (other than the CofE and Wales) to opt in. If a church organisation did not opt in it would be up to the people wanting to marry to take it up with the church involved. |nd the Cof E being the state church has been given a quadruple lock like they demanded, so how are religious institutions being theatened?
    * the point about equal recognition is a red herring (and unclear). Is he saying that Civil Partnerships ought to be available to straight couples. Then say so.

    The Bill is all about equality of esteem and how SSM is viewed and recognised by the state. He should know that.

    1. Robert in S. Kensington 7 Feb 2013, 1:26pm

      He has no intention of voting yes. He’s trying to play both sides now and it’ss a ruse to deflect accusations of bigotry and homophobia because he knows overall, he’s in the minority compared to the large number who support the bill in the Commons. I expect we’ll be seeing more of them trying to wriggle out of it but it’s too late for most of them.

  12. bobbleobble 7 Feb 2013, 11:28am

    It sounds all reasonable and lovely but you have to consider two things when reading his statement.

    1. Unlike some of his colleagues he voted against the bill which shows no willingness to work with the government to put right any of the problems he foresees in the bill. He doesn’t want gay people to have the right to marry full stop, all this posturing is simply to justify his vote.

    2. The first of his ‘fears’ about churches being coerced gives him the ability to vote no at third reading even if the government open up civil partnerships because he and others like him will always claim the government hasn’t gone far enough to protect churches. He has no intention of ever voting for this bill no matter what.

    1. Robert in S. Kensington 7 Feb 2013, 1:31pm

      I don’t think there is any more the bill can do to guarantee even more protection for the religious denominations. If the quadruple lock isn’t enough for the CoE and the opt-in for those who wish to participate, what could possibly be done to take it any further? The ECHR has already stated it’s not going to meddle in the internal affairs of governments legislating for equal marriage. No divorced hetero couple has ever brought a case against the CoE, so why would a gay couple. I don’t quite understand what he is alluding to. It”s just another one of those annoyingly feeble red herrings to justify a no vote at any stage of the legislation..

      1. bobbleobble 7 Feb 2013, 2:47pm

        I agree, the government has gone out of its way to protect churches and as Margot James pointed out on Tuesday the CofE has said that it is comfortable with the protections on offer. These people citing worries over religious coercion will never vote in favour because they will always pretend that the government hasn’t done enough. It’s just an excuse.

        1. Robert in S. Kensington 7 Feb 2013, 5:06pm

          Absolutely right. I’d have more respect for him and other of his il if they just came right out with it and said they oppose equal marriage, no evolution on the matter, end of. He’s going to vote no, regardless, most of them will. Their minds were made up before the consultation ended. We may see one or two voting yes for the next stages but it won’t be significant. I do wish some supportive MPs who voted yes really had it out with them in the Commons regarding the safeguards for religious denominations and put an end to the spurious notion that there are not enough protections and safeguards. Religious coercion is definitely a red herring because the opt-in takes care of that. What part of that does he not understand, any of them for that matter? They don’t sound too bright to me. Rather disturbing to think that people like him are elected isn’t it?

  13. He is no one’s successor. How amusing is the very idea.

    1. Robert in S. Kensington 7 Feb 2013, 5:08pm

      Tory posturing, successor indeed. Risible!

  14. Black tories just like a gay tories are uncle toms

    1. Not all Labour or LibDem supporters are pro-gay or pro-gay marriage. Look at the Labour and LibDem MPs who voted against the Bill. Not as many as the Tory MPs, by any means, but there were Labour and LibDem MPs walking through the “No” division while Conservative MPs were walking through the “Aye” division. The comment you have made is very simplistic.

      The opposition to LGBT rights does not come from Conservative politics: it comes from religion. The socially conservative Catholics who oppose homosexuality and LGBT rights in general can often be quite left-wing in some respects. Consider the pacifism promoted by the Pope, for instance.

      1. Labour MP’s may have voted against gay marriage but the were not the ones who introduced clause 28. CAmeron was part of the team that did and the damage caused by clause 28 continues today

        1. Oh, so that makes it all right then for the Labour MPs to have voted against equal marriage.

          And it doesn’t matter whether a Conservative changes his mind and becomes a brave supporter of equality after opposing it previously. If the person is a Conservative, he must never be forgiven. Never.

          (For those of a literalist disposition, I am being sarcastic.)

          1. How many Tory MPs voted against gay marriage?
            How many Labour MPs voted against gay marriage?

            The Tory Party remains the party of homophobic bigotry.

          2. And yet, Stephen, it was the Conservative Party that introduced the equal marriage Bill.

            Without them, this bill would not be going through.

            Strange, that.

    2. That’s surrendering to the idea that our rights should be partisan and risk being taken away every time there is a change of who is in power. I don’t want that: I want all the mainstream parties to respect me.

      It’s also a very selective reading of history.

      1. Well if you want to be on the same team as the people cutting benefits to the poorest, the disabled and the old becasue you can get married then with your selfishness you belong with the tories

    3. Robert in S. Kensington 7 Feb 2013, 1:22pm

      Token black Tories to pander to black voters while many in their party don’t give a toss about ethnic minorities. I don’t believe for one minute he’s going to consider a revised bill, let alone vote yes. He’s trying to save face. Well, too late I’m afraid. We won’t forget in 2015. They’re all on notice.

      1. What about the token gays? Many tories hate gay people

      2. It is an insult to Adam Afriyie to suggest that he is a “token black Tory.”

        Believe it or not, black people are no less intelligent and capable than white people, and there is no reason to assume Adam was selected as a parliamentary candidate on the basis of his race rather than on the basis of his abilities. There is very stiff competition to be selected as a candidate, Maybe someone who was successful enough in business to make a fortune of between £50 million and £100 million after being born into poverty might have some abilities to bring to the table in the candidate selection process.

        The kind of comment you have made is one I have read previously on Daily Telegraph comments blogs by some of the unsavoury people who post there.

        How do you know that “many” in the Conservative Party do not care about ethnic minorities? What percentage do you have evidence for? 0.01%? 60%?

        Prejudice against Conservatives is still prejudice.

        1. Staircase2 7 Feb 2013, 9:19pm

          I think you’ll find that James! is black himself no…?

          1. And your point is …..?

    4. Just because a black person or a gay person has views with which you disagree, doesn’t make them an Uncle Tom. That’s quite offensive. Gay and black people are more than capable of making up their own minds as to which political party is in their best interests. I can’t speak for black people, but as a gay person there are strands of socialism which are far from liberal in outlook.

  15. This is the most feeble excuse I have heard in a long time.

    Although this is far from the narcissistic anxiety of heterosexual purity, which the traditionalists tended to present, an argument that claims to be supporting equality whilst at the same time rejecting it, is not the winning rhetoric of a budding Tory Obama.

    1. Frank Boulton 9 Feb 2013, 3:33pm

      Please don’t liken him to Barak Obama, whose stance on same-sex marriage has opened up this opportunity for LGBT people in my home country (the UK), my adoptive country (NZ) and a number of other regions.

  16. Michelle Graham 7 Feb 2013, 11:49am

    Dissembling nonsense. We already have ‘two forms of legally recognised union’ and if he wants to treat same-sex partnerships ‘equally under the law’, then why not vote to do so?

  17. Robert (Kettering) 7 Feb 2013, 12:01pm

    What I find even more surprising is a man of colour who has benefited from all the equality legislation that has rightly been introduced can now DENY another minority equality?!

    I think he’s just another homophobic bigt trying to weazle his words to somehow justify his actions. An appaling man.

    1. But why are you surprised? Evidence that people from ethnic minorities are often slow to be supportive of gay rights can be found over and over again, not only in the US but here too – especially if evangelical religion plays a part in their societies.

      1. This Adam Afriyie is no David Lammy, is he! David Lammy’s speech in support of us on Tuesday was blindingly wonderful, I thought! To see a black MP going all out as he did, moved me.

        1. bobbleobble 7 Feb 2013, 2:49pm

          Absolutely. Lammy’s speech was incredible. As was Mike Freer’s. Both of them brought me to the verge of tears. Those who voted against the bill must have had truly hard hearts and closed minds not to be moved listening to them.

        2. I didn’t hear it, I must try and find it online. You’re right, the support of people like Lammy – ethnic minority and non-gay – is doubly valuable.

        3. David Lammy is a great man and would make a wonderful party leader.I’m sure he will one day be prime minister. afriyio is a bigot , a token fool for the phoney tory “progressives”.

  18. A vote against a change will be seen as a vote in favor of the status quo. Just like with the AV referendum, the ‘No’ campaign came out of it claiming that all those who voted no favored the status quo, even though quite a few people and groups went into the referendum prefering something else.

    Even if there are flaws in the same sex marriage proposal, it is better to vote in favor of it to set a precedent for change, to create an environment in which amendments such as that of heterosexual civil partnerships will be more easily welcomed.

    I suspect Adam Afriyie is just making excuses for himself, he would never have said this had the majority vote been ‘No’.

  19. A self-made millionaire, and a self-made thickie.

    1. Frank Boulton 9 Feb 2013, 3:37pm

      Self-made millionaire = self=server.

  20. We’re going to make sure that you are never leader of the any political party, mate.

  21. Another contemptible bigot trying to squirm his way out of being seen for what he truly is – an appalling homophobe whose bigotry renders him unfit for public office.

    He belongs in the BNP along with all the other ‘no’ voters.

  22. We won’t forget this Mr Afriyie – of that you can be sure.

    You regard gay people as 2nd class citizens – well get used to the idea that your political career is going to remain eternally 2nd class.

    A bigot cannot lead a mainstream political party.

    Perhaps the BNP will have you.


    1. I am a former BNP supporter (still a nationalist though) and no we
      wouldn’t have him. One of the biggest mistakes Nick Griffin made was to think gay-bashing would bring the BNP popularity. There are some nationalists like me who are considerably more liberal on this subject than the old-school ones.

  23. Robert in S. Kensington 7 Feb 2013, 1:16pm

    “My two main concerns now are that, first, the church and other religious organisations are not coerced through the threat of litigation.”

    Why does he like all of them in opposition keep trotting out this red herring? Didn’t the quadruple lock take care of the CoE, didn’t the opt-in take care of those who wished to participate. Didn’t the ECHR declare that it would not interfere with equal marriage in member states. How much clearer must it be?

    I don’t for a minute believe he’s going to reconsider a revised bill. He’s just saying it to deflect any accusations of bigotry, hypocrisy, homophobia considering that it passed on the second reading with a huge majority in favour. They don’t like it that they’re now being subjected to much closer scrutiny because of it and will continue to be until it finally passes. There is no way they can save face over this issue. They damage they’ve done is to themselves. He’ll never be the leader of the Tory party.

    1. I don’t know. I think he just might vote yes the next time. Over the course of the next few months there is going to be a concerted campaign by the C4M and the others where they will use increasingly immoderate and hateful language and continue to misrepresent the facts. Part of the reason, I am sure, Cameron has pushed forward to with this is to set the party up for the future and the younger voters who do not have nearly such bigoted views (mostly). Mr A will therefore be increasingly seen as part of the old guard and will want to be seen as part of the new. I also think the Church of England are going to go a bit quieter on this. They have their lock. They are also aware that they are viewed as pretty bigoted at the moment.

      So he may well vote in favour. (But I am not going to rush to Ladbrokes and put any money on it!).

  24. Silly Adam, thinks that palling up with these ancient bigots will help his cause. Look what they did to Davies. No one will want a party leader who doesn’t back equality. You had better do a massive U turn now, or reconcile yourself to a life on the bank benches.

    1. I agree, Edward.

    2. Robert (Kettering) 7 Feb 2013, 7:43pm

      A VERY good point. Any leader now with homophobic views is very, very unlikely to be electable as it will always be hanging over them. Talking of hanging, that’s another total taboo for any leader and has been quietly dropped, Thatcher being about the last leader who supported it.

      This bigot has just put an end to any ambitions of being leader as he’s firmly on the wrong side of the argument.

  25. If these extracts are representative of his entire statement then it’s just incoherent babble. We might be seeing part if a backtracking trend here though, which is encouraging. We could also be taken for a ride. Time will tell. Take nothing for granted and keep up the pressure.

  26. Frank Boulton 7 Feb 2013, 1:38pm

    Am I hearing this guy right? He seems to be saying that he’s voted against same-sex marriage, because heterosexuals can’t have civil partnerships? What a lame excuse for bigotry!

  27. Rubbish!, another nasty bigot who voted against civil/human rights. All the mp evil bigots who voted against equality are all squirming back with excuses , the usual all my gay friends love being second class citizens and would hate equality routine or this fools babble. Now that the media frenzy over “gay marraige” has already moved on ,1 day later. These mp scum have now got their names marked under Bigot , their reputation will forever be tainted.
    afriyie has been compared by the daily fail to Obama just because he is bi racial and a potential tory leader. How insulting to president Obama for the british gutter press to compare him with a vile bigot..

  28. Adam, being ‘allowed’ to sit at the back of the bus is not being treated equally!

  29. A bigot for sure – there are no excuses. A mixed race politician keeping in line with his bigoted tory dinosaurs. Surprising the number of blacks who having experienced racism are equally capable of dishing out prejudice against gays and transgenders. Being a practising christian is no excuse either as we are told god is love.

    1. Robert in S. Kensington 7 Feb 2013, 4:35pm

      They don’t equate their own struggle with discrimination with the equal marriage issue. In fact many are offended that the two are compared. Sad! Similar to orthodox Judaism that opposes equal marriage and supports discrimination against us considering the horrors of the holocaust and disenfranchisement in Nazi Germany.

      1. How many black people do you know or have asked to confirm this, oh yes – none and none!!

    2. Joseph oz 8 Feb 2013, 2:30pm

      I’m sorry but I’ve just jot to say this…
      He reminds me of one of those old cast iron money boxes…
      You put the coin in the hand, press the lever and it swallows
      the coin!

  30. This lying sack of garbage is what’s favored to be future leader?

    Firstly, TWO forms of partnership recognition ALREADY exists. In spite of the fact that gay people only wanted ONE from the beginning, twats like YOU and other weak spined individuals (under the guise of “protecting marriage” INSISTED on a SEPARATE, SECOND form of partnership.

    Then to add insult to injury you insult us by saying practically in the SAME SENTENCE that you don’t want two forms of partnership so your answer is to strengthen (NO ELIMINATE) the SECOND form of partnership so that it’s equal to the first. Which is it. Do you NOT want two forms or do you WANT two forms?

    What a twat! Just another concern troll!

    1. Very well said! His argument is completely contradictory. I read this article three times and I still haven’t got the faintest idea why he voted ‘No’ or what his supposed ‘explanation’ actually means.

    2. So Hayden, why exactly is gender hate speech acceptable?

      1. What on earth are you talking about?

  31. Another person from an ethnic minority background with a VERY short memory about ‘equality’. You voted against the bill, Adam, because you are homophobic. Take a LONG, HARD look in a mirror and ask yourself WHY you feel as you do about homosexuality. Could it be because you have some unresolved ‘issues’? Nod nod, wink wink, know whatImean?

  32. Fortunately, President Obama makes up for bigoted a*holes like Adam.

    1. Staircase2 7 Feb 2013, 9:22pm

      …not exactly an ‘either/or’ is it…

  33. it is the Civil partnership bill of 2004 that creates 2 forms, civil partnership was always a compromise and got us a lot of the way there. We would not have got Equal marriage at that time.

  34. Quite a few of the MPs who voted against or abstained/missed the vote are going out to make excuses now. I wonder if they realise they were in the wrong and are worried about losing votes over it.

    As for Adam Afriyie’s excuse, predictable and a load of rubbish!

  35. Although you’re a Tory, Adam Afriyie, I last week entertained notions of you becoming the UK’s Obama, our first black Prime Minister.

    I’ve now changed my mind.

  36. Staircase2 7 Feb 2013, 9:16pm

    ….mmmm ‘not equal ENOUGH’ for you huh…?


  37. johnny33308 8 Feb 2013, 12:31am

    The view of this person from across the pond is that he has performed a crudely disingenuous cop-out, without actually saying anything meaningful! I distrust him….just sayin’…..he seems to be sneaky and untrustworthy…..(aren’t most politicians, everywhere, really?)

    1. Staircase2 14 Feb 2013, 3:10am

      What you mean ‘across the pond’…?
      He’s a British MP!

  38. johnny33308 8 Feb 2013, 12:45am

    Dear people, will you PLEASE cease using the anti LBGT pejorative ‘Same Sex Marriage’? That is a term used by enemies of Equal Marriage, especially the ‘religious’ enemies filled with hatred and bigotry, both here in the US and in the UK. It is used to denigrate us and our struggle for Full Legal Equality as well as to incite the ignorant into violence against innocent LGBT people all over the world. Must we continue to assist those arrayed against us? PLEASE, for the sake of unborn generations of LGBT people, consider your words, I beg you! PLEASE call our struggle what it truly is, a fight for Marriage Equality, not gay marriage or same sex marriage, or anything else. No offense is meant here….simply clarification of our struggle. Peace…

    1. Well, the pro-folks here, including the Government, are calling it “equal marriage”, and that’s what I usually say, but I don’t think that using the terms “gay marriage” or “same-sex marriage” is really anything to get worked up about.

      After all, we are trying to be specific about what we are campaigning for. It’s about equal marriage, but equal for LGBT people. Some people argue for polygamous marriage. I don’t personally support that, but those people could also regard their campaign as one for “equal marriage”.

  39. I firstly I’m a gay man 23 and have a partner who i would love to marry one day but i happen to agree everybody is saying this is equal marriage but it isn’t its same sex marriage which isn’t the same. I want the same rules as my sister who got married last year. The Easiest thing to do is change the wording to one person to another but this legislation doesn’t do this is doesn’t mention about consummation of the marriage or about adultery do you really want to get married and know your partner can go off with whom he wants and you have no legal right dissolve your marriage i know i don’t, now I’m waiting for someone to tell me i don’t want to see gay marriage and I’m arrogant I’m not I’m looking for true equality and i believe this legislation doesn’t provide that.

  40. It seems that again this man knows nothing about history. I wonder his thoughts on other equal rights? I am sure not that long ago there wouldn’t have been a black candidate with a chance of a Tory seat. As for the arguments about the church traditions in marriage please can they get the facts right? It was in fact not until the 15th Century that the Church laid down formal rules about how a marriage was to be consummated in legal form – and curiously it was still not a religious ceremony. When a couple married, by mutual declaration in front of witnesses, they didn’t need a priest, or even to have to take place in a church.
    A century later, the Council of Trent finally decided to extend its authority over marriage and in 1563 declared that the wedding declaration would need to be carried out in front of a priest.In fact, the Reformation’s leading proponent, Martin Luther was strongly of the opinion that marriage was a secular issue and religion had nothing to do with it.

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