Livingstone campaign statement on New Statesman interview

8th February, 2012 6:14 pm

A spokesperson for Ken Livingstone said:

“Ken is clearly saying the advance of lesbian and gay people into politics is unequivocally a good thing.

‘Unlike many in the Conservative Party he has fought for equality for LGBT rights throughout his life including when it was highly controversial. He established Britain’s first civil partnership register, fought Clause 28 and backed LGBT Pride.

‘Ken will reinstate London’s LGBT Pride annual reception at City Hall, put the Greater London Authority back into the Stonewall Employer’s Index and oppose government cuts to LGBT organisations.”


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  • Charlesgillies

    Loads of hypocritical Tories condemning this. Ken lightyears ahead of any other politician on gay rights.

  • Anonymous

    That’s strange when he actually said the Tories were riddled with gays.
    Good to know that Ken thinks homosexuality is some sort of disease.

    •  Well since he doesn’t think that, maybe the problem is you and people like you desperate to misinterpret him.

    • Anonymous

      What Ken actually said was this…

      >>Ken on his private life:

      >>>>We [Boris and I] both have five [children]. I can admit to all mine.[The public] should be allowed to know everything, except the nature of private relationships – unless there is hypocrisy, like some Tory MP denouncing homosexuality while they are indulging in it.

      >>Pressed by Khan about his use of “Tory MP”, Ken responds:

      >>>>Well, the Labour ones have all come out . . . As soon as Blair got in, if you came out as lesbian or gay you immediately got a job. It was wonderful . . . you just knew the Tory party was riddled with it like everywhere else is.

      If you read some kind of homophobia into that, you really need to check your brain is still working.

      • I’m gay. Nothing offensive about that extract, and Ken’s support over the years – when people making the right noises now were voting for Section 28 – is very clear in terms of his support for equality

        • Anonymous

          But people who expect power have to be very careful of the words they use, Riddled is of course what wood has with wood worm, not how people are with sexuality

        • Ian

          I’m gay too. I do find his comments offensive. Riddled is just a word. But, the idea that prominent gay politicians have only got jobs in government due to their sexuality is not helpful.

    • John Reid

      The point of a disease is that you don’t know you have it, It’s like there to do someothing that goes against what your body wants, So gay men in the Closet in the Tories who vote for anti gay legisaltion to appeal to the Daily mail (are going agiant what their own conscious wants they’re voting for homophobic legislation even though they know it makes their won lives harder) ,could be considered riddled.

  • Pingback: Ken Livingstone: two interviews « Though Cowards Flinch()

  • Chilbaldi

    Obviously Ken isn’t remotely homophobic, as anyone who has met him can attest.

    But seriously, really bad choice of words by Ken. You would have thought that a man of his experience would realise that the gutter press will make hay over this.

  • Look, Ken and the GLC were pro-gay back in the early 1980s, and Ken was active on gay people’s behalf before that in Camden. 
    I was working for the GLC Press Office when Thatcher destroyed the GLC in 1986. At that time, Ken refused to affirm he was straight (despite what now appears to be his fairly successful het life), and was quite willing to dance with gay men at the wonderful Gotterdamerung last night!

    If Peter Tatchell is the gay patron saint of LGBT rights, Ken is his straight counterpart.

    It is literally gob-smacking that Tories think they can attack Ken on this issue.

  • What about the long-running dispute between Ken, when he was Mayor & The Green Party over Kens homophobia, that got fairly heated as I recall. Are The Green Party Tories as well ?

  • What about the long-running dispute between Ken, when he was Mayor & The Green Party over Kens homophobia, that got fairly heated as I recall. Are The Green Party Tories as well ?


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