House of Commons expected to break own world record for most openly gay MPs
The House of Commons is expected to break its own record for the world’s highest proportion of openly gay MPs after next month’s election, according to a study.
Research conducted by Professor Andrew Reynolds of the University of North Carolina looked at the projected outcomes in constituencies currently held by openly gay, lesbian and bisexual MPs, and seats that identified openly LGB candidates could possibly win.
The research found that the majority of the 26 Parliamentarians who currently openly identify as lesbian, gay or bisexual are expected to return to Parliament – and will be joined by a number of newcomers.
The proportion of LGB Members of Parliament is predicted to be higher than any other Parliament in the world, with 29 projected openly gay MPs – 4.4% of the total of 650.
In addition, the Labour party is projected to overtake the Tories in the number of LGB Members of Parliament.
There are currently 13 out Tory MPs, nine out Labour MPs and four out Lib Dems – but the Labour party’s share “will probably increase by at least five”, due to the proportion of new openly gay candidates selected in safe or winnable seats.
From the major parties, researchers found 35 Labour candidates, 35 Lib Dem candidates, 28 Tory candidates, 23 Green candidates and five UKIP candidates who identify as LGB – though the estimates are not exact.
However, gay men are still dominant – with far fewer lesbians and bisexual candidates.
79% of the LGB candidates expected to win are gay men – three identify as lesbian, two as bisexual men and one as a bisexual woman.
Researchers identified LGB candidates “based on party identification and individual candidate publicity”.