Michael Segalov writes that both finalists to replace David Cameron for the leadership of the Conservative Party, Theresa May and Andrea Leadsom, have a record of opposing equal rights for gays.
Take a look at Theresa May who, in 1998, voted against equalising the age of consent for gay sex. That’s the same Theresa May who voted against repealing Section 28 – legislation that banned the “promotion” of homosexuality by local government and schools. She said no to same sex adoption, no to civil partnerships, and she didn’t once bother to turn up to vote on the Gender Recognition Act either.
In her time at the Home Office, policies have been put in place which forced LGBT asylum seekers to “prove” their sexuality, some allegedly through intimate photos and videos of same-sex sexual activity. Others were told that they couldn’t be gay simply because they had children.
Andrea Leadsom is the final contender, and despite only being elected to Parliament in 2010, she’s already managed to flex her anti-gay credentials. She too failed to vote in favour of same sex marriage, and has said that straight couples should have priority over gay ones when it comes to adopting children. Today on ITV News she clarified that she was “not happy” about the gay marriage law because of “hurt caused to many Christians”. Marriage, she continued, should have remained “as a Christian service that was for men and women who wanted to commit in the eyes of God”.
Segalov says that David Cameron, although not sympathetic to it, at least had the sense to realize that the writing was on the wall and to oppose same-sex marriage was politically toxic.
Leadsom and May might both be women, but there’s nothing progressive about either of them. The next Prime Minister of Britain is going to be a gay rights dinosaur, and our broken democracy means there’s nothing we can do.
Of the five people who contested for the nomination, only Michael Gove, whose name will be forever liked with backstabbing, has no anti-gay record.