Charity claims majority of MSPs back same-sex marriage

An equality charity claims that a majority of MSPs have committed to voting in favour of same-sex marriage.

The Equality Network said 69 out of 129 MSPs at Holyrood have signed a pledge to back a change in the law.

Key Scottish government ministers such as Alex Salmond, Nicola Sturgeon, John Swinney and Kenny MacAskill have indicated they will vote to give same-sex marriage equal legal status, according to the Equality Network.

The charity said the leaders of all the opposition parties, the majority of SNP and Labour MSPs, and all Liberal Democrat and Green MSPs will back a change in the law, too.

The Scottish government is due to publish the results of its same-sex marriage consultation this month.

If legislation is not forthcoming, the Equality Network has indicated that it will work to secure a Private Member’s Bill.

Tom French, from the charity, said: “With a clear majority of MSPs committed to voting for equal marriage the Scottish government should now lead the way by introducing full marriage equality; both civil and religious.”

If the government decides to legislate, there would be a further consultation on a draft Bill, and a finalised Bill could be introduced into the Scottish Parliament in 2013.

A Scottish Government spokesman said: “While we have expressed our initial view and with all of the opposition leaders at Holyrood supporting same-sex marriage, we have given an assurance that all opinions will be listened to, no final views have been reached, and therefore no decisions have been taken.”


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