Tory MP who said it’s ‘wrong’ to be gay labelled ‘abhorrent’ by his own party
A Conservative politician who told school students homosexuality is “wrong” has issued no apology.
Andrew Turner was forced to step down following the controversy, after serving as the Isle of Wight’s MP for 16 years.
The row emerged when a 16-year-old politics student posted on Facebook that Mr Turner had made homophobic comments while visiting her school.
Mr Turner, 63 (pictured below), told told A Level students that homosexuality is “dangerous to society” during a discussion about Isle of Wight Pride, according to On the Wight.
Now his own party activists have turned on him as he refuses to issue a public apology.
Ewan Smith-Wainwright, a gay Conservative candidate in the area, has labelled the now ex politician as “abhorrent”.
He said in a statement: “It is deeply upsetting to hear such abhorrent remarks made by someone who is elected to represent the views of the island people.
“I would like to say as a young gay man I faced a lot of homophobia and discrimination growing up and it is deeply concerning that views like this are still being expressed in 2017, when I thought the world has moved on.”
Mr Smith-Wainwright added: “These views are not shared by me or any member of the Isle of Wight Conservative Group as it was the Conservative government that legalised same sex marriage.
“I would reject any comments that states that is the view of the Island Conservatives.”
Conservative Party insiders, speaking to PinkNews, said that Andrew Turner “resigned before he was pushed” following the row.
They added: “There’s no place in the party for such views.”
Despite being forced to step down, he has not made any comment in public withdrawing the claim that it is “wrong” to be gay.
A-Level politics student Toby Sheard, 17, who witnessed the comments, told PinkNews: “Once the meeting was over it hit me what he had said, I was a danger, it was wrong to treat me as normal.
“This form of attitude shouldn’t be allowed in our society, especially in our government.
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“Later in the meeting, I tried to push him for why he held this belief, he dodged the question three times until admitting it was for a religious reason.
“The fact that we have MPs with these views in our governing party scares me that we could easily see ourselves going back into the past.”
In a statement issued hours after the row, Andrew Turner wrote: “It has been my privilege to serve the people of the Isle of Wight as their Member of Parliament.
“I have been incredibly fortunate to represent such a beautiful constituency.
“After 16 years I have come to the decision that it time for a new generation to take up the mantle of representing my fantastic constituents.”