Boris Johnson on gay marriage: ‘what’s the fuss?’

The Mayor of London has said he doesn't 'see what the fuss is about' when it comes to same-sex marriage on last day of Conservative Party conference

Boris Johnson on gay marriage: ‘what’s the fuss?’
10 October 2012

Mayor of London Boris Johnson has said he doesn’t ‘see what the fuss is about’ when it comes to same-sex marriage.

His comments come on the closing day of the Conservative Party’s annual conference in Birmingham.

The conference has seen some in the party question Prime Minister David Cameron’s support for same-sex marriage, led by former minister Anne Widdecombe and ex-Archbishop George Carey who made headlines by saying some gay marriage supporters were like Nazis.

But Mayor Johnson, widely viewed as a potential rival to Cameron for the Tory party leadership, nevertheless came out to support his boss’s support for equality.

Foreign Secretary William Hague said it was ‘natural’ for the the Conservatives to discuss issues in society such as gay marriage, leading Johnson to repeat his support for the proposed government legislation on the matter.

Johnson said: ‘I have been asked to say something more in favour of gay marriage – and I do so gladly, because frankly I can’t see what the fuss is about.

‘A couple of years ago someone asked whether I supported the idea and I was a bit flummoxed, because I thought it was already legal.

‘In so far as marriage is a legal and secular recognition, by the state, of a union between two people, then that institution needs to move with the times.’

Hague spoke in support of marriage equality after hundreds of other delegates, including Widdecombe and Carey, who took part in a rally to oppose plans to give homosexual couples the right to marry in church – if the religious group involved wanted to do so.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme, William Hague said that members of parliament would vote according to their consciences when the proposals come before the House of Commons.

Hague added: ‘These arguments are treated in a mature way, as you will have seen here at this conference, but all political parties move with their societies, move with the attitudes of their time.

‘Looking at the history of the Conservative party over 200 years, that has always happened; the Conservative party is successful over the centuries because it does reflect the social attitudes of the time, as well as giving necessary economic leadership.

‘The world has changed; it is tougher, it’s not going to change back to how it was 10 years ago. We have to reform education, welfare, a tax system that attracts business to this country, and we are doing those things that wouldn’t be done by our opponents. That’s the heart of the Prime Minister’s message.’

HAVE YOUR SAY

MORE TOP STORIES

No thumbnail available

Bangkok University issues new uniform rules for trans students

'The school has an open view on sexuality, but let’s dress appropriately'
No thumbnail available

Spain furious over US imported books that want to 'cure' gay children

‘I Want To Stop Being Gay’, ‘How To Prevent Homosexuality’ and ‘Gender Confusion In Childhood’ are the books available in one of Europe's largest department stores
No thumbnail available
No thumbnail available

Liverpool football player calls team mate gay on Twitter

Spanish player Suso could be in trouble with the FA and Liverpool FC
No thumbnail available

UN promises a free and equal world for gays

A new United Nations video sends a clear message: LGBT rights are human rights and abuse of gay and trans people is against international law
No thumbnail available

Video of Malaysian gay pastor’s wedding

Reverend O Young Wen Feng (also known as Ngeo Boon Lin)'s marriage to Phineas Newborn III is touchingly poignant, especially as it was celebrated in Malaysia where homophobia is deeply entrenched
No thumbnail available

Sara Gilbert recalls how she came out as a lesbian to teen boyfriend and co-star Johnny Galecki

She and The Big Bang Theory star played a couple on TV's Roseanne
No thumbnail available

UK Prime Minister's gay marriage advisor quits

Andrew Cooper, who made gay marriage a top issue for the British government has resigned over a power dispute
No thumbnail available

Dutch human rights ambassador appeals to firms: Let's unite for global LGBTI rights

Kees van Baar, human rights ambassador for the Netherlands, wants to work with corporates to improve life for LGBTIs around world
No thumbnail available

Actor-activist Wilson Cruz joins GLAAD staff

My So-Called Life and Noah's Arc star is new Strategic Giving Officer