Anger at local politicians on gay marriage votes

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IRATE churchgoers have blasted local politicians now that gay marriage has been legalised by both the Scottish and Westminster Parliaments.

Members of Cornerstone Christian Fellowship are urging locals to withdraw their support for Labour MP Gregg McClymont and Scottish Nationalist MSP Jamie Hepburn at the next elections, after both voted for the move.

A leafleting campaign against both men will now get underway in Abronhill, just two weeks after 70 members from pressure group Scotland For Marriage congregated at the Westerwood Hotel.

Cornerstone’s pastor Alan Welsh insists the meeting was full of locals, including two Catholic priests, and he claims that both Mr McClymont and Mr Hepburn simply ignored their views.

Pastor Welsh said: “I’m deeply disappointed that our own Cumbernauld and Kilsyth representatives are in favour of this proposal. All figures show there are more people against this proposal than for it.

“I am all for equal rights and believe the legislation that was introduced in 2004 to allow Civil Partnership enables same-sex couples to have the same rights as married couples. Yet this new proposal is going a step too far.

“I hope our elected representatives in Government realise, we will remember if they vote for this bill and they will be held to account for it,’’ he added.

However Mr McClymont said: “I am clear on how strongly some people feel about this issue and I am sorry that some will disagree with my position. I know such views are sincere and deeply held.

“I believe both in religious tolerance and religious freedom. I believe marriage is the strongest and most enduring of social institutions and that extending its scope to gay couples has the benefit of widening marriage’s reach.

“As an MP I don’t believe that I should support laws that deliberately set out to discriminate against anyone,’’ he added.

Meanwhile Mr Hepburn said: “As with all matters, I am happy to speak with any constituent about this issue, whatever their position may be. Indeed, a number of people have already been in touch, although as of yet, I have not been approached directly by Pastor Welsh.

“The proposals for the Bill state that not only will no religious group be coerced to undertake ceremonies, the right of individuals to continue to express their own opposition will be protected. This is a sensible way forward,’’ he added.