Gordon Brown wins leadership by default
Gordon Brown is Prime Minister elect. After securing so many nominations that a leadership contest is not necessary, the Chancellor now needs only to wait before he takes over from Tony Blair.
Andrew MacKinlay said he will give Mr Brown the final nomination needed to avoid a contest with left winger John McDonnell.
Research by PinkNews.co.uk has shown that until the passing of the Sexual Orientation Regulations, Mr Brown has never attended Parliament when gay rights have been voted on whilst Labour has been in power.
Mr Brown on 14 separate occasions failed to attend the House of Commons when issues relating to gay equality were voted on. He failed to support the government’s equalisation of the age of consent, the abolition of Section 28, gay couples being able to jointly adopt, civil partnerships and the Equality Act.
The registration of civil partnerships are the responsibility of the Treasury, the department that Mr Brown still heads.
But last week, a prominent gay MP has laughed off suggestions that Gordon Brown is homophobic.
Chris Byant told PinkNews.co.uk that the Chancellor, who today launched his campaign to become leader of the Labour party and the UK’s next Prime Minister, is totally committed to gay rights.
“I think he is proved himself to be a strong Chancellor, with 2.5 million more people in work and halving unemployment.
“I think he has got the right values and principles and I think he is going to surprise everyone.”
Mr Bryant, the MP for Rhonnda, defended the Chancellor’s voting record.
“Gordon has not voted on much but his record is still better that David Cameron who voted against gay adoption.
“I spoke to Gordon when we were in the lobby voting for the Sexual Orientation Regulations and he said “It is good to do something you believe in.”
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“I know that Gordon believes in what the Labour government has done and is wholly committed to equality.”
The race to succeed John Prescott as deputy leader is providing more drama than what looks more and more like a Brown coronation.
Mr Bryant told PinkNews.co.uk he will be supporting Harriet Harman.
“I am supporting Harriet Harman. I just think when she has the bit between her teeth there is no stopping her and I think she will add something to the top team.
“She worked hard on gay rights issues and I know that she badgered people at No 10 and else where over the proposed Catholic adoption opt out.”
Cabinet ministers Peter Hain and Hazel Blears and Alan Johnson have revealed they have over 44 MPs backing them. Backbench candidate Jon Cruddas is confident he can get enough support to run.