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Cameron’s new Culture Secretary voted against gay rights

By Will Stroude

As part of his Cabinet reshuffle in the wake of the Conservative election victory last week, David Cameron has appointed John Whittingdale as Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.

The MP for Maldon, who has chaired the department’s Select Committee since 2005, has consistently voted against LGBT equality legislation – most recently on the issue of same-sex marriage in England and Wales in 2013.


When he said he would be voting against same-sex marriage in England and Wales, he said he felt like it would cause “distress to many, particularly those with strong religious beliefs”.

The 55-year-old also voted against equalising the age of consent for gay men back in 1998 and argued against including sexual orientation in the Equality Act 2006, which outlawed discrimination against LGBT people in the provision of good and services.

In contrast, gay MP Chris Bryant will serve as Culture Secretary in Shadow, as part of the Labour’s own reshuffle following the party’s election defeat and subsequent resignation of Ed Miliband last Friday (May 8).

Education Secretary Nicky Morgan, who also voted against equal marriage before backtracking and saying she was “proud” of the progress LGBT rights have made in the UK, will keep her position as part of the reshuffle.

The Conservatives won 331 seats at last week’s general election, giving the party an absolute majority of 5 seats. You can check out the party’s LGBT election manifesto here.

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