Tory MP Peter Bone: There was ‘no point’ in pressing ahead with my same-sex marriage referendum
Conservative MP Peter Bone has explained to PinkNews.co.uk his reasons for withdrawing a private member’s bill, which had called for a referendum on England and Wales’ same-sex marriage law.
Mr Bone’s bill was due to receive its second reading in the Commons on Friday 29 November – but it was withdrawn last Friday.
With equal marriage now law, Mr Bone told PinkNews.co.uk that there was “no point in trying to change it now”.
He conceded “we didn’t win” and that equal marriage opponents would instead be waiting to see what happens when the first same-sex weddings take place in 2014.
Speaking to PinkNews.co.uk, Mr Bone said this had been a reference to the political implementation of the policy rather than the actual principle of marriage rights for same-sex couples.
The MP stated that equal marriage had not been in the 2010 Conservative Party manifesto and claimed that it did not have a democratic mandate.
He said it had been “absolutely nuts to bring in this bill that wasn’t in the manifesto.”
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In February this year, Equalities Minister Helen Grant dismissed this assertion by saying: “[Equal marriage] was in the Contract for Equalities that was published at the same time as the Conservative General Election manifesto. It was quite clear what our intentions may well be.”
Despite denials by several members that Mr Blunt’s sexuality was the reason behind the decision to remove support, some had gone on record to say they would not have supported a gay candidate.
Revealing that he had written a letter of support for Mr Blunt, Peter Bone said such an attempt to deselect on the basis of sexuality was “absolutely wrong”.
He added: “If it was in part because Crispin is gay, then that would be absolutely outrageous”.
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