Top journalist John Sergeant says he is ‘not keen’ on same-sex couples dancing on Strictly

Prominent journalist and former ITV political editor John Sergeant has said he is “not keen” on there being same-sex dancing couples on Strictly Come Dancing. 

Sergeant, who took part in the show in 2008, spoke out against having same-sex couples on Strictly Come Dancing Channel 5’s after he was asked about the issue on Channel 5’s The Wright Stuff.

“I’m sorry I’m not keen on it,” said Sergeant, who was the BBC’s chief political correspondent from 1992 to 2000.

Pressed on whether he was a “traditionalist” over the issue by host Matthew Wright, Sergeant responded: “No I just think that it’s – I mean, look, it’s a straight forward question.

“If I was gay, I would think: ‘Oh, why can’t all of us men get together and dance?’

“But I’m not gay, I’m sorry about this…it’s not illegal to be heterosexual. So I look at these things and think, ‘oh god isn’t she great’ and, you know, if I was dancing with a man I wouldn’t enjoy it.”

Sergeant went on to say: “There are lots of things you do in private that you don’t necessarily have to put on television. This isn’t a kind of – it’s not parliament, it’s Strictly, it’s just an entertainment show.”
“You have to say, what would people like? What do people enjoy? Well, most people enjoy seeing a man and a woman dancing, most people.”

Strictly Come Dancing in Blackpool

Strictly Come Dancing in Blackpool (Getty Images)

The journalist then engaged in a heated debate with comedian and fellow panelist Scott Capurro, who is in favour of having same-sex couples on the programme.
Capurro said: “It’s just interesting because they would have said this, maybe 30 or 40 years ago, even in this country, about interracial couples dancing on screen and you [Sergeant] would have been offended by any opposition to that.”
He added: “I don’t really see the difference.”
The two then engaged in an argument, with Sergeant telling Capurro: “You don’t have to watch Strictly. You know, if you’re gay and you like to watch men dancing, presumably there are channels that you could find.”

Strictly’s new head judge Shirley Ballas recently back having same-sex couples on the show. (Stuart C. Wilson/Getty)

A number of high-profile individuals, alongside fans of the show, have backed same-sex couples on Strictly.

Earlier this month, new head judge Shirley Ballas backed same-sex dance couples appearing on the show – after years of resistance from the show’s producers.

And, in April, dancer on the show Gleb Savchenko said he’d “love to see same-sex couples” on the show – and that he would up for being paired with a male celeb.