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Politics

  • 10th July 2007

    Cameron’s families speech doesn’t mention civil partnerships 12

    Mr Cameron conceded that the UK has become more tolerant under a Labour government.

    4:45 PM — David Cameron's big speech on social policy today ran to nearly 1,800 words, but several phrases were missing, among them 'civil partnerships.'The Tory leader set out proposals to encourage marriage through the tax system, which might introduce a married couples tax allowance, worth around £20 a week, aimed at making it easier for one parent to stay at home.Mr Cameron was responding to a report from former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith.

  • Budapest mayor defiant over Pride violence

    SZDSZ yesterday announced that it would ask for same-sex unions to be legalised.

    3:56 PM — Extremist elements who attacked gay Pride participants in the Hungarian capital over the weekend have been roundly condemned as "intolerant, primitive and cowardly."Budapest Mayor Gabor Demszky said yesterday that he and his political party, The Alliance of Free Democrats (SZDSZ), totally condemn the violence at last weekend's Gay Parade in Budapest.On Saturday skinheads and fascists massed along the route of the march for gay rights.

  • Blair laughed then worried about minister’s cruising 1

    Davies, married three times and the father of two children, later admitted he is bisexual.

    3:05 PM — It has emerged that Prime Minister Tony Blair laughed when first told that Welsh Secretary Ron Davies had been mugged while cruising on Clapham Common in 1998.However, after another gay revelation he started to worry that his government's image might be damaged.Alistair Campbell, the former Prime Minister's communications chief, published a bowdlerised version of his diaries yesterday, called The Blair Years. 

  • Homophobic government faces election test

    The Prime Minister rejected a demand by the democratic left alliance (SLD) to immediately dissolve parliament.

    12:37 PM — The conservative Polish coalition government, known for its nationalistic and homophobic views, is at risk of falling apart.Twins Jaroslaw and Lech Kaczynski, the Prime Minister and President respectively, run one of the largest countries in the EU with a population of 38 million people.Yesterday Prime Minister Kaczynski fired his coalition partner, deputy and head of the main coalition party, Andrzej Lepper, for suspected involvement in corruption.

  • Cherie Blair persuaded Tory to defect over Section 28

    Shaun Woodward was appointed to the Cabinet by Gordon Brown last week, as Secretary of State for Northern Ireland.

    11:40 AM — The much-anticipated diaries of spin doctor Alistair Campbell may have disappointed politics junkies with their lack of information about the decade-long feud between No 10 and No 11 Downing St, but his reminiscences still contain some interesting insights into the Blair years.One such nugget is the revelation that the Prime Minister's wife and a former gay Radio 1 DJ helped persuade a senior Tory MP defect to the Labour party because he was about to be sacked for supporting gay rights.

  • 9th July 2007

    Senate approves judge who attended gay ‘wedding’

    The Senate Judiciary Committee had approved Judge Neff for a seat on the US District Court in Michigan's Western District in October 2006.

    5:23 PM — An attempt by a conservative Republican to block the appointment of a federal judge because she had attended a same-sex commitment ceremony was defeated in the US Senate yesterday.Senator Sam Brownback of Kansas is one of the less prominent politicians vying for the Republican party's nomination for President.Last year he blocked the nomination of Michigan Court of Appeals Judge Janet Neff to the federal court.

  • Blair to recommend Peter Mandelson for House of Lords

    Mr Mandelson has had a colourful political career. One of the architects of New Labour, he became arguably Tony Blair's closest adviser.

    3:11 PM — Former Prime Minister Tony Blair is to recommend his close political ally Peter Mandelson for a peerage.Traditionally a departing PM draws up a resignation honours list, though for the first time the names put forward for the House of Lords will be scrutinised by the appointments commission.It is thought Mr Blair will only nominate a few people to the Lords because of the ongoing 'cash for peerages' criminal investigation.

  • Feature: The long road to decriminalisation 1

    Leo Abse, in an interview in The Observer, said the supporters of the bill had to use all their political acumen to drag it through parliament.

    12:07 PM — 40 years ago this month, a campaiging Welsh Labour MP by the name of Leo Abse managed to guide a Bill through both Houses of Parliament.By a combination of smart tactics and appealing to politicians to pity those 'less fortunate' than themselves, he got them to agree to a partial decriminalisation of male homosexual relations.It brought an end to hundreds of years of legal persecution, as Alex Bryce explains. 

  • Pride march attacked in Croatia

    Homosexuality was legalised in Croatia in 1977, and the age of consent was equalised in 1998.

    11:10 AM — Ten people were injured when violence broke out at a gay Pride march in Zagreb on Saturday.Police arrested eight people, some of whom were reported to be armed with petrol bombs. A gang of around 20 young men taunted and abused the Pride participants.Despite the Croatian government granting limited partnership rights for gay and lesbian couples, homophobia remains rife in the country, which is overwhelmingly Roman Catholic.

  • Hungary’s first gay minister comes out at film festival 1

    Mr Szetey has been working as a state secretary at the Prime Minister's Office since last July.

    10:31 AM — Hungarian Socialist Gábor Szetey became the first elected political official in Hungary to publicly come out as being gay when he opened the 12th Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered Film and Cultural Festival in Budapest last week.According to DPA, Mr Szetey's announcement came on the same day as junior coalition member the Alliance of Free Democrats (SZDSZ) announced that it would ask for same-sex unions to be legalised.

  • 8th July 2007

    David Cameron defends his appointment of anti-gay campaigner 21

    Mrs Warsi conducted a homophobic campaign in a failed attempt to become elected in the constituency of Dewsbury

    3:01 PM — Conservative Leader, David Cameron today defended the appointment to his Shadow Cabinet of a Muslim who previous campaigned against gay rights.As she failed in her attempts to be democratically electesd to the House of Commons, Sayeeda Warsi, will be ennobled as a "working peer" to become David Cameron's Shadow Minister for Community Cohesion. On the 6th July, PinkNews.co.uk reported that Mrs Warsi conducted a homophobic campaign in a failed attempt to become elected in the constituency of Dewsbury.

  • 6th July 2007

    Presidential hopeful caught in porn row

    Mr Romney emphasised that his main fear is young children innocently coming across pornography on television and the internet.

    4:17 PM — Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney is being questioned by social conservatives over on-demand pornography in Marriott hotel chain rooms.Mr Romney, a Marriott board member from 1992 to 2001, has publicly voiced his opinions on the perils of pornography.Now conservative activists have attacked the candidate and the Marriott for presenting themselves as family-orientated when pornography continues to be distributed in their hotels.

  • New Tory shadow minister’s previous opposition to gay equality 19

    Mrs Warsi's campaign leaflet attacked the government's gay right agenda.

    12:05 PM — The much-publicised appointment of a Muslim woman to the Tory Shadow Cabinet could harm relations between the party and the gay community.Sayeeda Warsi, the new Shadow Minister for Community Cohesion, hit the headlines during the 2005 election campaign for distributing campaign leaflets with a strongly hostile attitude to gay rights.

  • Campaigning MP welcomes government bullying commitment 1

    The first Commons investigation into bullying by the Education Select Committee was instigated last year at the request of Mr Williams.

    11:31 AM — Stephen Williams MP, a Liberal Democrat who has campaigned against bullying in schools, has welcomed the commitment from the Minister of Children to stamp out the problem.The first Commons investigation into bullying by the Education Select Committee was instigated last year at the request of Mr Williams.The committee heard evidence from charity Anti-Bullying Alliance that between 30-50% of young people in secondary schools attracted to people of the same sex will have directly experienced homophobic bullying.

  • 5th July 2007

    Iraqi death squads use chat rooms to entrap gay men 3

    Muqtada al-Sadr's men have adopted a new tactic, borrowed from the Iranian secret police.

    5:32 PM — Two gay Iraqi men have survived kidnapping and beating by the violently homophobic Mahdi Army.The army is loyal to firebrand fundamentalist Shia cleric, Muqtada al-Sadr, who is fighting to establish an Islamist dictatorship in Iraq.Two months after their ordeal, traumatised Ahmed, 23, and Zaid, 24, both students in Baghdad University, have come forward to tell how they were lured into a trap by members of the Mahdi Army.

  • Boris Johnson might smash gay mayoral ambitions 7

    Mr Johnson, not gay but a firm favourite with voters of all sexualities, may be in the frame.

    4:41 PM — The race for the Conservative party nomination for Mayor of London became more interesting today with the revelation that the party's Higher Education spokesman Boris Johnson is seriously considering throwing his hat into the ring.If Mr Johnson, one of the most popular Tory MPs in the country, does decide to run it will end the ambitions of two gay prospective candidates.Earlier this week Nick Boles, an openly gay man, withdrew from the race to undergo treatment for cancer.

  • Analysis: Homophobia rampant in British schools 1

    The survey of 1,145 young people was conducted by the Schools Health Education Unit for Stonewall.

    2:22 PM — Homophobic bullying plagues the majority of UK schools and shocking levels of bullying are meted out to school pupils and teachers who either are gay or perceived to be gay.That is the conclusion of a wide-ranging study carried by gay equality organisation Stonewall.Nearly two thirds of LGB students reported instances of such harassment. That figure jumps to 75% of young gay people attending faith schools.

  • Government committed to stamping out gay bullying 1

    The minister stressed that faith schools will be compelled to take action against homophobia.

    1:12 PM — The newly-appointed minister for Children, Kevin Brennan, has committed the government to working with Stonewall to eradicate homophobic bullying from British schools.Speaking at the gay equality organisation's Education for All conference in London, Mr Brennan said the new Department for Children, Schools and Families would focus on the security, well being and success of children in all aspects of their life, not just academic achievement, and that stopping bullying in all forms was a key part of that mission.

  • Minister slams casual homophobia of DJs like Chris Moyles 8

    Last year Mr Moyles was named Bully of the Year at the Stonewall Awards.

    12:44 PM — Kevin Brennan, the new Minister for Children, told an audience of education professionals and activists in London today that homophobic language used on TVand radio is unacceptable.Speaking at the Stonewall Education for All conference, the minister said that the perception that the use of words like 'poof' or 'gay' is 'just a bit of harmless banter' contributes to homophobic bullying in schools.

  • Harman and Follett emerge as ‘part time’ Ministers for Equality

    Harriet Harman is Minister for Women and Equality

    12:01 PM — After much confusion, Harriet Harman has emerged as Minister for Women and Equality. Initially it was believed that the role would be combined with that of Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government as it was with Ruth Kelly.Hazel Blears, who was appointed as the Secretary of State for Communities, was thought to be keen to play a role in Equality.Barbara Follett is Junior Minister for Women and Equality.

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