MSP refuses to meet with traditional marriage supporter

A local MSP who supports redefining marriage has refused to meet a constituent who opposes the change, in a move described as “astonishing”.

Resident Rose Docherty responded to an invite from her MSP, Fiona McLeod, calling for constituents to speak to her about any issue.

Docherty wanted to raise the topic of same-sex marriage, which is currently being considered by the Scottish Parliament.

Refused

She explained: “I was refused an appointment to meet with Fiona McLeod MSP to discuss this issue.

“I asked why and was told because she has already firm views on this issue and won’t be changing her opinion.

“When I clarified that in effect my local MSP was refusing an appointment with a constituent to discuss an issue as a result of having been encouraged to get in touch, I was told that that was correct.

“I find it quite astonishing”, said the retired local authority employee and former SNP member.

Astonishing

McLeod is now being reported to Holyrood’s Presiding Officer – who is politically impartial and chairs sessions in Parliament.

“Any complaint to the Presiding Officer is a matter for her, and cannot be commented on by an MSP until it has been resolved”, a spokesman for McLeod said.

McLeod is an SNP politician and represents Strathkelvin and Bearsden, near Glasgow. She voted in favour of same-sex marriage last month.

A spokesman for Scotland for Marriage commented: “It is astonishing that any MSP would refuse to meet with her constituents to discuss a Bill which is being considered by the Scottish Parliament.”

Reflect

At the end of last month Holyrood backed same-sex marriage, when it voted on the general principles of the Marriage and Civil Partnership (Scotland) Bill for the first time.

MSPs passed the Bill to the next stage by 98 votes to 15, but ahead of the vote John Mason MSP warned that Parliament was “not reflecting the views of the public”.

Last year it was revealed that Alex Salmond’s public consultation on the issue drew 77,508 responses – the largest response to a consultation in Scottish Government history. Two thirds of those responses were against the plans.

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