Tory MPs write ‘alternative queen’s speech’ urging referendum on equal marriage
Conservative MPs have drawn up an ‘alternative queen’s speech’, including policies to hold a referendum on equal marriage, bring back the death penalty, ban the wearing of burkas in public and to rename a public holiday after Margaret Thatcher.
The 42 policies were drawn up by a group of Tory MPs who said that it was a “genuine attempt” to demonstrate policies which could be delivered by a future Conservative Government.
It included holding a referendum on equal marriage, despite the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill nearing the end of its committee stage in the House of Lords.
A recently introduced amendment to the equal marriage bill for England and Wales, also called a referendum on the issue of equal marriage, and would mean that even if passed at all stages, the law would not come into effect until voters approved it at a referendum.
According to the policies in the list, the office of the Deputy Prime Minister, currently occupied by Nick Clegg, would be abolished, and the BBC would be privatised.
Another of the more controversial policies included was to rename the late August Bank Holiday day “Margaret Thatcher Day”.
The letter contained many other less controversial policies, including reducing wind farm subsidies, and legislating a transferrable tax allowance for married couples, which are known to be popular with many Tory MPs.
Peter Bone, the MP for Wellingborough and one of the authors of the document, said: “This is serious attempt to deliver policies that the British public really want. There are ideas here that could form the basis of a future Conservative manifesto.”
Mr Bone, who called equal marriage “completely nuts”, and who was ejected from two Parliamentary Committees last month, said he did not think David Cameron would have a problem with the policies. He said: “I think the Prime Minister will be pretty relaxed about this.”
All of the 42 proposed bills may now be subject to debate in Parliament, as members of the group who authored it staged a four-day sit-in in a committee room at the House of Commons Public Bills Office.
The group ensured that the bills all made it onto the House of Commons Parliamentary table, and will be introduced as private members’ bills some time in the next year.
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