The Speaker of the House of Commons has been criticised for squandering over £20,000 of taxpayers’ money on his new coat of arms, which features a prominent ‘equality’ rainbow.
John Bercow, who was named Politician of the Year 2010 by a homosexual campaign group, has become well known for championing ‘homosexual rights’.
His coat of arms, designed by him with the help of the College of Arms, shows rainbow colours on a scroll and the motto “All Are Equal”, to signify the Speaker’s support for the ‘gay rights’ agenda.
The new crest also includes pink triangles which are used as a symbol of the homosexual lobby.
Mr Bercow also had a special painting of himself commissioned at a further cost of £22,000 to the taxpayer.
Tory MP Rob Wilson said: “I am surprised that the Speaker feels it is a good use of public money in such challenging economic times.”
Mathew Sinclair, director of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said: “It’s very excessive at this time of public sector austerity for the Speaker to spend tens of thousands of pounds on a vanity portrait of himself.
“Following the MPs’ expenses scandal, Parliament should be cutting costs, not throwing taxpayers’ money away boosting John Bercow’s ego.”
In April Mr Bercow caused a storm when it was announced he was set to tell dozens of homosexual groups how they can “influence Parliament”. The event was organised by Voluntary Sector North West, the Lesbian & Gay Foundation and Parliamentary Outreach.
The move risked damaging the Speaker’s role as an impartial presiding officer.
Earlier this year Mr Bercow gave his backing to the creation of a multi-faith chaplaincy for the House of Commons.
However, critics questioned the need for it and branded the proposal as an “exercise in politically-correct box ticking”.
When campaigning for the role of Speaker Mr Bercow said he was proud of his record on pushing for equality on gender, race, disability, age and sexual orientation. He made no mention of religion.
In 2009, before he was elected Speaker, he branded a free speech safeguard in a sexual orientation ‘hate speech’ law as “at best superfluous, and at worst deeply objectionable”.
In the same year Mr Bercow also called for Parliament to host homosexual civil partnership ceremonies.