Monday, December 4, 2023

Thurrock MPs give reasons for voting against same sex marriage bill

BOTH THURROCK MPs have explained their reasons for voting against the same sex marriage bill in the House of Commons on Monday night.

It was a free vote, and the Bill passed 366 to 161.

Thurrock MP, Jackie Doyle-Price said: “My position is as it has always been. I support equality for same sex couples, but for me marriage is a sacrament, it is not a creation of the state.

“I would have been comfortable with a Bill which sought to equalise civil partnership with civil marriage. Instead we have a Bill which leaves civil partnership intact and interferes in church affairs.

“I abstained at second reading in the hope that the Bill would be improved. I voted against it at third reading because I was not sent to Parliament to make bad law.

“I do not rule out supporting this in future if the approach is changed.”

South Basildon and East Thurrock MP, Stephen Metcalfe said: “This is a particularly contentious issue and one which I very carefully considered over many months.”

“I am sure we all agree that discrimination on the basis of gender, religion, age, creed, colour or sexuality is wrong and for that reason I support the right for same-sex couples to have access to Civil Partnerships.

“Civil Partnerships give same-sex couples legal security and are an opportunity to make a public commitment to each other, many of which are celebrated in the same style as a marriage.”

“However, many believe that marriage as defined is the unique (and in a religious context sacred) union of a man and a woman.

Therefore, there is concern that the legal protections offered by the quadruple lock stopping churches and other religious organisations being forced to conduct same sex marriages could be challenged, indeed recent legal opinion has questioned how robust these protections are.

I also believe that the Government has no mandate to redefine marriage, it was not in any party’s main manifesto and therefore many of the public feel they did not vote for this.”

“It is also unnecessary. Some argue that this is about equality and respect. But if we celebrate our differences and equally respect both marriage and civil partnerships then the change is not required.”

“Finally, I believe, along with many others on both sides of the argument, that there are other matters which are far more pressing for the Government to deal with at the present time.”

“I therefore felt unable to support the redefinition of Marriage and voted against the Bill.”

In summary: “I voted against the Bill because I felt that the Government had no mandate for the change; the legal protections offered could be challenged and if we celebrate our differences and equally respect both marriage and civil partnerships then the change is not necessary.”


  1. What about Jackie Doyle Prices reasons for not voting for the UK to have its referendum considering 89% of thurrock voted for a vote.

    What are her reasons for that? Far more people care about that than her reasons for voting on this topic.

  2. Good on them both.

    While Cameron and his Notting Hill friends fret about this vital issue of national importance… here in Essex we’re more concerned about unemployment, our unsatisfactory hospital, sky high immigration, failing schools and especially the nonsense that is the EU.

    Now gay marriage has been passed I hope the Tories will knuckle down and sort out the real problems facing this country before they lose even more votes to UKIP.

  3. I have to agree with both MP’s, however, what is getting confused in teh argument is the word Marriage, this is a legal event and at present is completely open to same sex couples, what is at the crux of the arguments is Weddings which is a Marriage Ceremony normally taken place in a religious building,

    Same sex Marriage in a church is against all the doctrines of the Christian religion so unless people are now asking the Government to completely rewrite the Bible they should think again.

  4. Here are a pair of vulnerable MPs more interested in the electoral threat from the UK isolationist party than the well being of their Gay and Lesbian constituents who simply want to get married. Beware the strength of the Pink vote, Stephen and Jackie. Bit of a fundamental issue this one for the diversity and equality lobby and guess what, a large proportion of Tories like our MPs have been found wanting again.

  5. Quite frankly, I don’t agree with the position either of Thurrock’s MPs have taken. I do, however, believe it is their right to vote with their conscience; it’s a pity they don’t do it more often and spend most of their time following the party line.

    I do find it amusing when JD-P says that “I was not sent to Parliament to make bad law” yet she voted for and actively supports legislation that attacks the poor, the sick and the disabled of the country but allows big corporations and rich individuals to avoid vast amounts of tax. At least Metcalfe had the sense to say that there are more important issues to be dealt with.

    I personally believe that same-sex marriage is an important issue regarding equality; however, there are a number of more serious issues that need sorting first – tax avoidance, the damage being caused to the NHS by the ‘reforms’, the deaths attributable to the changes in the welfare system, the misuse of statistics by Government ministers to discriminate against and demonise the poor, the sick and the disabled and the utter disregard shown by members of the Government to the corruption and hate-mongering within their ranks.


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