Cambridgeshire: MP's Vote On Gay Marriage
6 February 2013, 10:01
MP's have voted to make gay marriage legal, but it seems it was an issue that left Cambridgeshire MP's divided.
Last night MP's in the House of Commons backed the proposals by a big margin of 400 to 175.
However, Labour and Liberal Democrat support masked a massive show of protest by Tories, with 136 taking advantage of a free vote to register opposition.
Just 127 endorsed the proposals at second reading, with 40 more either formally abstaining or not voting.
Amongst the Tories voting against the bill, were Peterborough MP Stewart Jackson, North West Cambridgeshire MP Shailesh Vara, South East Cambridgeshire MP James Paice and Saffron Walden MP Sir Alan Haselhurst.
South Cambridgeshire MP and Leader of the House of Common Andrew Lansley did however back the Prime Minister's proposal as did Cambridge Liberal Democrat MP Julian Huppert.
A further two Tory MP's Huntingdon's Jonathon Djanogly and North East Cambridgeshire's Stephen Barclay didn't vote.
The result followed more than six hours of stormy debate on the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill.
Speaking to Heart Julian Huppert MP said: 'I'm delighted and proud to have voted in favour of equal marriage today.
'It's a great moment for equality and a great opportunity to those people who have been denied the chance to get married just because of the gender of the person that they love.
'I look forward to it making good progress through the House of Commons and the House of Lords.
'I hope that it will also address issues around Civil Partnerships, but also allow humanist marriages to take place in England as they do in Scotland.'
Stewart Jackson MP told Heart that he had several reasons for voting against it, he said: 'I don't think that there are appropriate safeguards and guarantees in place to protect civil liberties and religious freedom.
'I think that also we are opening a pandora's box of ligitation and division in society by different groups.
'Gay people are already afforded legal rights in terms of finances and other matters under the Civil Partherships Act 2004, there's no mandate for this policy.'
Also speaking in the Commons Mr Jackson predicted a significant impact on Mr Cameron's leadership, insisting: 'The only comparable rebellion is the Iraq war vote in 2003 which undermined Blair's Premiership. Tonight's vote will do the same for Cameron.'
Attention will now turn to the Lords, where opponents of the plans are expected to mount tough resistance.