I am very disappointed to have to rise to oppose the Bill. I never imagined that I would be put in a position where I have, by virtue of standing up for marriage, been characterised variously as a “homophobic bigot”, a “religious nutter”, a product of the dark ages, or, as I see in this weekend’s press, on the brink of making “a tragic mistake” that I will have many years to regret. This was not in our main manifesto. To cite that it was on page 14 of the equalities contract, a sub-manifesto that had little or no public scrutiny, is disingenuous at best.
My concern this afternoon is to uphold marriage. I speak not just from personal religious interest; although sadly I feel it necessary to have to state it, I do not speak either from any sentiments of a homophobic nature. I hope that my friends who are gay would stand to that comment.