Ruth Davidson warns PM that LGBT rights are more important than the Tory party
Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson has warned the Prime Minister that her commitment to LGBT rights is more important than her support of the Conservative Party following the news that Theresa May is proposing a deal with the anti-LGBT Democratic Unionist Party (DUP).
She spoke to Prime Minister Theresa May to get “categoric assurance” that LGBT rights will not be affected by a Deal between the DUP and the Conservatives.
The Conservative Party failed to get an overall majority in yesterday’s General Election, and must now try to secure an agreement with another party in order to govern.
The Tories are currently in discussions with Northern Ireland’s ultra-conservative Democratic Unionist Party, which is strongly opposed to LGBT rights.
The DUP has stalled all progress on equal marriage in Northern Ireland, and previously supported the introduction of a ‘conscience clause’ to protect people who discriminate against LGBT people.
Ms Davidson told the BBC: “I was fairly straightforward with her [Theresa May] and I told her that there were a number of things that count to me more than the party.
“One of them is country, one of the others is LGBTI rights. I asked for a categoric assurance that if any deal or scoping deal was done with the DUP there would be absolutely no rescission of LGBTI rights in the rest of the UK, in Great Britain, and that we would use any influence that we had to advance LGBTI rights in Northern Ireland.
“It’s an issue very close to my heart and one that I wanted categoric assurances from the Prime Minister on, and I received [them].”
Stonewall also urged the Tories to keep their promise to LGBT people and not permit progress to equality to be harmed under the DUP.
Ms Davidson’s plans to marry her partner were delayed this year after she was hit with a £10,000 vet bill when her dog was hit by a car.
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She announced her engagement to Jen Wilson on Twitter last May, having popped the question while on holiday in Paris.
She was congratulated by the then Prime Minister David Cameron, whose government introduced gay marriage legislation.
Davidson attracted headlines during last year’s Conservative leadership contest when she refused to criticise Andrea Leadsom – Theresa May’s main opponent – who had called gay marriage “harmful”.
She even invited Leadsom, who went on to lose to Theresa May, to her wedding.
Davidson also revealed last year that she dreams of following in the steps of former Labour MP Ed Balls – and compete on the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing.
“I want a bit of that action,” she said of Ed Balls’ appearance on the show.