FG says Creighton views 'her own'

Wed, Feb 23, 2011, 00:00

Fine Gael insisted today the views of Dublin South East TD Lucinda Creighton were her own after she was heavily criticised for views she expressed on gay marriage.

Ms Creighton, who is a party spokeswoman on equality issues, said in a Twitter post on Saturday that she believed marriage was “primarily about children, main purpose being to propagate & create environment for children to grow up”.

She added that it was a “good policy” to support “male/female marriage” and said the civil partnership legislation introduced by the last government should ensure gay couples were treated fairly.

The tweets have resulted in a storm of online criticism in recent days but Ms Creighton has not responded directly to the tweets directed at her.

Yesterday, however, she posted a link to a Dáil debate during which she spoke in support of the Civil Partnership Bill but also expressed support for the definition of marriage as set out in the Constitution.

Pornographic pictures and comments critical of Ms Creighton’s stance continue to be posted today on the Lucinda Creighton TD Facebook page. Some of the pictures appeared to have been removed. But those remaining on the page include a stylised image of a dog with the text: “Curb your homophobia – we bite back.”

There were also images of gay couples getting married, including one of Elton John and his husband David Furnish.

Fine Gael was separately accused by some commenters online of “censorship” of its own Facebook page when posts about Ms Creighton and gay marriage were removed.

Some comments remained on the site, including one by a person describing Ms Creighton’s views on marriage as “extremely disturbing”. Another poster decried “disgraceful, outdated policies from FG on a real issue”.

Asked for comment on Ms Creighton’s remarks and on the wider policy issue, a Fine Gael spokesman said: “Lucinda Creighton’s comments represent her own personal views. In 2004 Fine Gael was the first political party to call for civil partnership for same sex couples and has been fully supportive of the civil partnership legislation at all times.”

He said that if elected to government, the party was committed to “fully implementing this legislation by making changes to the Finance and Social Welfare Acts to give full effect to the rights afford to civil partners by the Civil Partnership Act 2009”.

He said Fine Gael’s election manifesto commits to this. "It also commits (on page 36) to require schools to anti-bullying policies and, in particular, strategies to combat homophobic bullying.”

The gay rights group Noise called on the party to address what it described as the "homophobic" comments.