Culture secretary prepares to address Commons on same-sex marriage

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Culture Secretary Maria Miller is responding to an urgent question about the government’s equal marriage proposals in the House of Commons this afternoon.

Mrs Miller is due to make a statement in the Commons at 3:30pm.

The urgent question, granted by Speaker John Bercow, has been tabled by Conservative MP Edward Leigh, who is opposed to equal marriage rights for gay couples.

In October, the Catholic MP, who previously voted against civil partnership legislation, and campaigned against the removal of Section 28, the law which banned schools from teaching students about homosexuality, said it was “foolish” to “muck about” with marriage.

Plans to legalise same-sex marriage have divided the Conservative Party.

More than 100 Tory MPs are thought to be against the idea.

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

More soon.