Top gay Tory ejected from Braverman speech accuses home secretary of ‘bullying’ LGBTQ+ community

Andrew Boff is removed from the Conservative Party Conference.

A top Tory member of the London Assembly who was ejected from Suella Braverman’s speech at the Conservative Party Conference has accused her of “bullying” the LGBTQ+ community.

Andrew Boff, a prominent Conservative party member and openly gay politician, was removed from the main conference auditorium on Tuesday (3 October) when he quietly accused the home secretary of homophobia and transphobia.

Boff spoke up when Braverman claimed that the UK would “go properly woke” under Keir Starmer with “highly controversial ideas” like “gender ideology, white privilege, and anti-British history.”

Boff, who has been a loyal Tory for more than 50 years quietly commented that Braverman’s speech was “trash” and was “making our Conservative Party look transphobic and homophobic.”

Andrew Boff is removed from the Conservative Party Conference
Andrew Boff was removed from the Conservative Party Conference after calling Suella Braverman’s speech “trash”. (Getty Images)

“There’s no such thing as gender ideology”, he added.

With that, he was removed from the conference centre by security guards. But Boff was more than happy to share his thoughts with reporters waiting outside.

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Speaking to the press, Boff accused Braverman of ‘“bullying” and “vilifying” LGBTQ+ people.

“The home secretary said some things which I found quite objectionable, I consider them bullying, I consider them bullying trans people and the LGBT community,” he told ITV News.

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“She used those tropes of ‘gender ideology’ which, of course, doesn’t exist.

“I was born and brought up that when you see a bully you challenge them and that’s what I was doing and I challenged her.

“This home secretary was basically vilifying gay people and trans people by this attack on LGBT ideology, or gender ideology. It is fictitious, it is ridiculous.

“It is a signal to people who don’t like people who are LGBT+ people. Words like that in the forum of the party that I love need to be challenged.”

When asked if he had planned in advance to protest Braverman’s speech, Boff told Channel 4 News: “I had seen reports of what Suella had said and I don’t always believe what I’ve read on social media. So I thought, ‘I’m going to listen myself to see what she’s saying’ – I think that everybody should do that, rather than reacting to a headline that happens to get tweeted.

“And I listened to what she said and it horrified me. Not just on the LGBTQ+ issue, but this, again, vilification of asylum seekers, people who are coming here to have a better life. It just seems cruel and it looks like bullying.

“I never thought we were that kind of party. And I still don’t think we are that kind of party. So, when you hear that, you have to challenge it.”

Other Conservative MPs have since commented on Boff’s treatment by security staff, arguing that was unnecessarily “heavy-handed” and even “vile”.

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Conservative and chair of the all-party group on LGBTQ+ global rights told PA Media: “I don’t really blame [Boff] for doing what he did.

“There’s a sense of frustration that Suella was the latest in a number of cabinet ministers who mentioned trans people in their speech. The government keeps repeating that they want to treat trans people with dignity and compassion; we need some demonstration of that now.”

Another Conservative MP, Robert Buckland told the BBC that Boff was simply “making his feelings known about aspects of the home secretary’s speech – as has been the right of Conservatives since time immemorial at Conservative Party Conference.

Suella Braverman pictured leaving a weekly Cabinet meeting.
Andrew Boff is the latest to criticise Suella Braverman for her controversial comments about the LGBTQ+ community. (Getty)

“It’s one thing to stop Just Stop Oil type protesters from disrupting a speech, it’s quite another to remove a long-established and senior member of the Conservative Party from just voicing his opinion.”

Since her speech concluded, Braverman has said that, while Boff’s comments were “silly”, he should have been “forgiven and let back into the conference.”

Braverman’s speech is the latest in a number of targeted jabs at the LGBTQ+ community.

Earlier that day, the home secretary said that she supported health secretary Steve Barclay’s proposal to keep trans women out of women’s hospital wards.

”Trans women have no place in women’s wards or, indeed, any safe space relating to biological women,” Braverman said.

“The health secretary’s absolutely right to clarify and make it clear that biological men should not have treatment in the same wards and in the same safe spaces as biological women. Just days earlier, Braverman was heavily criticised for her “deeply disturbing” comments about gay asylum seekers, which sparked protests in London.

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