Boris Johnson: ‘Whack through marriage equality now’

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Boris Johnson has again affirmed his support for marriage equality, as the debate over legalising equal marriage in the UK heats up, saying that the government should “whack through” the legislation.

Yesterday the Mayor of London was one of nineteen senior Conservatives who announced the formation of a new campaign group supporting marriage equality, which said “Marriage should be open to all, regardless of sexuality.”

The group uses the slogan, Freedom to Marry, and includes Michael Gove, the Education Secretary, and cabinet ministers.

Later in the day, Mr Johnson, told Sky News’s Murnaghan programme that “it is perfectly obvious that the constituency is there for doing this,” reports the Metro.

He also said the coalition government should “get on and whack through,” legislation to allow equal marriage.

The group was formed by Nick Herbert, the former police minister and current Conservative MP for Arundel & South Downs. He resigned from the government in September following David Cameron’s first major reshuffle.

David Cameron has promised a change in the law in England and Wales by the next election in May 2015.

Speaking in favour of equal marriage on Friday, Mr Cameron said he did not want gay couples to be excluded from a “great institution”.

Culture Secretary Maria Miller says the government will outline its response to this year’s equal marriage consultation on Tuesday 11 December.

The issue of same-sex marriage has been divisive among Conservative politicians, with around 130 MPs appearing to be planning to vote against the measure when it comes before parliament in spring.

Former Prime Minister, Sir John Major, has thrown his support behind same-sex marriages in churches and says David Cameron’s backing of the reform is “genuine”.

Welsh Conservative MP David Davies, who over the weekend suggested most parents would prefer their children “not to be gay”, today dismissed accusations that he is a homophobe by reminding people of his participation in an amateur boxing match against a gay fighter.

The campaign group also includes signatures from Alistair Burt, the Foreign Office minister, an evangelical Christian, two other former Conservative ministers – Lord Fowler, and Nicholas Soames – openly gay, Ruth Davidson, who leads the Scottish Conservatives, columnist, Tim Montgomerie, and political blogger, and LBC host, Iain Dale are also signatories.