Thursday, May 31, 2012

Cunliffe on marriage equality

I've been contacted by David Cunliffe about yesterday's post on where MP's stand on marriage equality, which incorrectly put him in the "no" camp. Here's his explanation:

You have cited the team, who listed me as ‘anti-equality’ on their website. It appears they made this judgement before actually asking for my opinion.

I have advised them of my position, which is to support Marriage Equality.

My Labour Party colleague Louisa Wall is arranging a Marriage Equality member’s bill which progresses human rights while protecting existing religious freedoms. I look forward to seeing the text of Louisa’s bill, and to supporting it.

Which is good to hear (and the spreadsheet has now been corrected).

At the same time, I'm a little worried about this talk of "protecting existing religious freedoms". Is Labour going to put up a US-style bigot-amendment? Are they going to allow marriage celebrants - who are public officials, performing a public function - to discriminate on a ground prohibited by the Human Rights Act in the performance of their public duties? I'd love to know.

Update 1/6/2012: Louisa Wall has released her bill [PDF], and it has no nasty surprises. I'm glad to have been wrong.