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Content about Government of the United Kingdom

September 19, 2014

First Minister resigns after the country votes to stay in the union with the rest of the United Kingdom

Alex Salmond, the First Minister of Scotland that helped to pass same-sex marriage, is to step down.

He will also resign as leader of the Scottish National Party (SNP) after he lost the independence vote. The nation voted 55% against breaking up the union, and 45% were in favor of independence.

He said: 'For me as leader my time is nearly over but for Scotland the campaign continues and the dream shall never die.'

Salmond was an early supporter of same-sex marriage.

September 11, 2013

Clegg tells UK LGBT heroes and celebrities including film star Hugh Grant everyone should speak out ‘loud and clear’ against gay abuses in Russia

The British public wanted same-sex marriage equality and politicians followed their lead, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has said.

The Liberal Democrat leader made the comments at a reception celebrating the Marriage (Same-Sex Couples) Act for England and Wales which has now been signed by the Queen and will allow gays and lesbians to wed from next year.

He admitted it had been a ‘long and sometimes bumpy’ journey down the aisle, but argued the new law would help make Britain better.

August 9, 2013

@Magiczebras tweeted ‘KILL WEATHERLEY’ in response to the MP’s letter asking Prime Minister David Cameron to speak out against Russia’s anti-gay laws.

British MP Mike Weatherley has received a death threat via Twitter.

The Twitter user @magiczebras tweeted earlier today ‘KILL WEATHERLEY’ as a response to a Pink News story about Weatherley’s recent letter to Prime Minister David Cameron.

In his letter, Weatherley, who's been the MP for Hove in East Sussex since 2010, highlighted concerns 'with regard to LGBT rights abroad, particularly some of the new anti-gay legislation that has recently been passed in Russia’.

July 17, 2013

Queen Elizabeth II has signed the Marriage (Same-Sex Couples) Act for England and Wales, making it the law

Queen Elizabeth II has signed same-sex marriage into law in England and Wales.

By summer 2014, the first gay couples in the UK will be able to unite in matrimony.

It is the last step in the long battle to get the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill through parliament, making it an Act.

Speaker John Bercow announced the bill had received Royal Assent, and it was greeted with cheers in the House of Commons. 

July 17, 2013

Bill must now only be signed by Queen Elizabeth II

The lower house of British Parliament had a two-hour debate then approved the final changes to a bill legalizing same-sex marriage in England and Wales.

The bill, passed in the House of Lords on Monday (15 July), only now must be signed by Queen Elizabeth II to become law. This is considered to be a formality.

June 19, 2013

UK's House of Commons Deputy Speaker and not yet been charged and has denied all previous allegations so far

The Deputy Speaker of the UK’s House of Commons was arrested on suspicion of three further sex assaults, it was revealed today (19 June).

Nigel Evans has not yet been charged and has disputed the allegations so far.

The assaults are alleged to have been committed in Blackpool, Lancashire and London between 2003 and 2011 on men in their 20s.

In May, it was revealed Evans was being questioned over two allegations, one of rape and another of sexual assault against two men in their late 20s.

June 10, 2013

Labour MP Chris Bryant is hoping the Church of England chapel in Parliament could become multi-faith to allow same-sex couples to marry there

The UK parliament has asked Queen Elizabeth II to allow gay couples to marry in a royal chapel.

Members of parliament are hoping the St Stephen’s Chapel, the main place of Christian worship in the Palace of Westminster, could become a multi-faith venue that would allow same-sex couples to get married once it is legal in England and Wales.

Gay Labour MP and former Anglican vicar Chris Bryant has suggested allowing leaders of other faiths to conduct same-sex marriages in the chapel, such as the Quakers.

June 5, 2013

Anglican Church – the state religion of Britain – will now work to ‘improve’ the equal marriage bill as it goes through parliament, not block it

The Church of England has accepted it is the will of parliament that gay and lesbian couples can marry – and will stop fighting it.

The Bishop of Leicester, Tim Stevens, who leads the bishops in the House of Lords, Britain’s upper chamber of parliament, has made the statement today (5 June).

He said they will now try to ‘improve’ the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill for England and Wales, rather than trying to block it.

June 3, 2013

UK gay lobby group Stonewall launches its bingo game so you can play along as House of Lords debates marriage equality

Finally! Lord Norman Tebbit has used the term ‘lesbian Queen’. Full house!

Yes, Britain’s upper chamber of parliament is to debate the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill for England and Wales – and it’s time to play House of Lords #EqualMarriage Bingo.

Forget two fat ladies or legs 11, this is bingo gone crazy from ‘bestiality’ to ‘polygamy’ to ‘marrying your son’.

It’s been invented by leading British gay and lesbian campaign organization Stonewall to poke fun at the extremists in the Lords who wish to derail LGBT marriage equality.

May 23, 2013

Scots gay rights campaigners and politicians tell Scottish government to act now so that Scotland does not fall behind England and Wales in legalizing marriage equality

Scottish LGBT rights campaigners and leading politicians have called upon Scotland’s government to publish a timetable for the introduction of a marriage equality bill.

The move comes after the UK House of Commons have voted for marriage equality; with a final vote in the House of Lords expected soon, commentators say Edinburgh is falling behind England and Wales.

Speaking with Gay Star News, Colin McFarlane, director of Stonewall Scotland commented: 'The Commons overwhelmingly voted to extend the legal form of marriage to same-sex couples in England and Wales.

May 22, 2013

The motives of a woman who drove through the main gates of the House of Commons as MPs voted in favor of same-sex marriage are still unclear

Despite strict security measures, a woman managed to come within yards of British MPs as they voted on the same-sex marriage bill.

At 7.15pm last night (21 May), a woman in her 40s, dressed in a hajib, drove her red Volkswagen a few meters on to the parliamentary estate at the Carriage Gates before being halted by a security ramp.

A Scotland Yard spokesman said: ‘Following a brief conversation between officers and the woman, she locked herself inside the car and refused to leave.

February 27, 2013

Having said gay marriage is 'right thing to do', Nicola Sturgeon is told supporting it may be 'a vote loser'

Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said the Scottish Government should legalize gay marriage, but is now being told she would 'lose more than she would gain'.

Adil Bhatti, former SNP national council member, said: 'The gay community don't have that many votes compared to those that you would lose from the religious groups like the Muslims and the Catholics.

February 7, 2013

British MPs have voted for gay marriage. But the next stages of the Bill may prove to be a bumpy road through the comitttee stages and the House of Lords

When the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill stormed through the House of Commons on Tuesday (5 February), England and Wales moved a giant step closer to recognizing equal marriage.

The House of Commons vote passed with a majority of 225, with Prime Minister David Cameron and other major party leaders Ed Miliband and Nick Clegg voting in favor.

But despite the support from Members of Parliament (MPs) the bill still has some way to go before it becomes law.

It is now set to be scrutinised line-by-line in the committee stage by a cross-party group of MPs.

February 5, 2013

George Osborne, Theresa May and William Hague has written a letter asking Conservative MPs to back marriage equality in the vote

Senior Conservatives are appealing to backbench members of parliament vote for marriage equality in England and Wales today (5 February).

In a joint letter to address the split in government, Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne, Foreign Secretary William Hague and Home Secretary Theresa May have attempted to persuade other Conservatives to drop their opposition to same-sex marriage.

December 25, 2012

A man has been charged with assaulting Liberal Democrat John Morrison while he was walking home after a Christmas night out

The gay former leader of a local council in Scotland has died after being assaulted in Glasgow city center in the early hours of Saturday (22 December).

John Morrison, 50, was attacked while on his way home to Milngavie, where he lived with his partner, after a Christmas night out.

A man has appeared in court charged with assaulting him.

The former Liberal Democrat leader of East Dunbartonshire Council from 2003 to 2007 was found on Argyle Street at 12.40am.

He was taken to Glasgow Royal Infirmary for treatment but died there.

October 10, 2012

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

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.

September 12, 2012

Activist Bisi Alimi questions whether Maria Miller’s voting record on equalities should have ruled her out for her new job

If the selection of ministers to a particular position is based on their track records and qualifications, then Maria Miller is surely in the wrong job.

A reshuffle of the British cabinet saw Member of Parliament (MP) Miller given a new role as Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.

But this government department has also been given the job of overseeing equality, making her the UK’s senior Minister for Women and Equality. (She’s assisted in this role by her junior, Helen Grant MP.)

September 8, 2012

Despite voting against, or being absent for, every major LGBT rights bill, Maria Miller wants gay groups not to worry about her appointment

The UK’s newly appointed Culture Secretary is urging gay groups to talk to her before they judge her on her poor voting record on LGBT rights.

Maria Miller was responding to a social networking meme which showed how the new Minister for Women and Equality had voted in the past.