Monday, 7 May 2012

Is it time the Government lost God?

Alastair Campbell famously told Tony Blair "We don't do God". The current Government certainly does. I blogged last month about Cameron's claim that the values of the Bible are the values the UK needs.

Following last weeks elections, which were bad for the coalition, the Tory right has identified the cause for voter unrest and has identified the cure. The reason that the coalition did badly was their support for Equal Marriage and House of Lords reform. Dropping these will, they suggest, bring back the electorate. The signs are that the message is getting through. Were these the real reasons for the decline in votes or is this simply people with an agenda exploiting the traditional mid-term drop in support for the ruling party?

The London assembly vote gives an interesting insight. 'Christian Peoples Alliance - Supporting Traditional Marriage' fielded 25 candidates for the 11 available top up seats. I guess believing five loaves and two fish will feed 5000 renders this particular bums/seats problem trivial! The addition of  'Supporting Traditional Marriage' to the party's name brought the equal marriage issue to the fore. If this was a real concern then the votes would show it.

The results must have been a blow for the anti-equal marriage brigade. The Christian Peoples Alliance polled 1.7%, down from the 2.9% they achieved in both 2008 and in 2004. This 41% fall in support even managed to eclipse the catastrophic losses of the Liberal Democrats. Christianity is declining but not at the rate suggested by these results. This result shows one of two things. Either Christians have lost the appetite for mixing religion with politics, or maintaining discrimination in marriage is not an issue they can support. 

Similarly the support for Lords reform does not appear to be an issue which has alienated voters from the Government. A recent Yougov poll showed that only 5% support the current Lords appointment system. Perhaps this is the place to insert a plug for 'Holy Redundant' the humanist campaign to remove the automatic right for Bishops to sit in the Upper Chamber. Their website contains an email generator allowing you to express your opposition to the "Lords Spiritual" to your local MP.

Whatever reason people deserted the Government in the last round of elections, there is no reason to suggest it was down to Equal Marriage or Lords reform. Nadine Dorries suggests in the article above that that the Conservative party needs to drop these issues so they don't appear out of touch, inward looking and self interested. What appears to me to be out of touch, inward looking and self interested is Dorries and other Christians attempting to derail natural justice by trying to "do God" in politics.

No comments:

Post a Comment