Andrew Bridgen

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Andrew Bridgen is the Conservative MP for North West Leicestershire. He entered Parliament at the 2010 general election, the seat having been left vacant following the death of David Taylor (Labour).

Bridgen studied genetics and behaviour at Nottingham University, graduating with a degree in Biological Sciences.[1]

Abortion

Mr Bridgen voted for Nadine Dorries’s amendment to the Health and Social Care Bill on 7 September 2011, which was ultimately defeated by 368 to 118 votes. This amendment would have stopped BPAS and Marie Stopes from providing counselling for women with unwanted pregnancies and allowed ‘independent’ counselling including that provided by faith-based organisations.[2]

Mitochondrial Donation

In February 2015 Andrew Bridgen voted in favour of allowing mitochondrial donation, which would allow women who carried mitochondrial diseases to give birth to children who would not inherit the disease[3]. An October 2014 briefing report by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA), which had been investigating the issue for three years, stated that there was no evidence to show that mitochondrial donation was unsafe[4]. However, some religious groups had said that such procedures should not be allowed[5]. After clearing both Houses, mitochondrial donation is now legal, regulated by the HFEA.

Same-Sex Marriage

In 2012, Mr Bridgen signed the Coalition for Marriage petition which stated:

"I support the legal definition of marriage which is the voluntary union for life of one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others. I oppose any attempt to redefine it."[6]

The Coalition for Marriage describes itself as "an umbrella group of individuals and organisations ... backed by politicians, lawyers, academics and religious leaders"[7]. They are supported by the Evangelical Alliance[8] and former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey[9], and have connections with other Christian groups[10].

The group claims it "draws upon a substantial body of evidence". However, science and evidence-based politics blogger Martin Robbins described their argument as "confused, irrational and ultimately self-defeating"[11].

Mr Bridgen subsequently voted against the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill at its second reading in February 2013[12] and its third reading in May 2013[13].

References

  1. http://www.andrewbridgen.com/about-andrew-bridgen
  2. http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201011/cmhansrd/cm110907/debtext/110907-0002.htm#110907-0002.htm_div339
  3. http://www.publicwhip.org.uk/division.php?date=2015-02-03&number=147&mpn=Andrew_Bridgen
  4. http://www.hfea.gov.uk/docs/2014-10-01_Mitochondrial_donation__an_introductory_briefing_note_-_final.pdf
  5. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-31063500
  6. http://c4m.org.uk/signatures/
  7. http://c4m.org.uk/aboutus/
  8. http://www.eauk.org/articles/coalition-for-marriage-launched.cfm
  9. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-17102352
  10. http://bengoldacre.posterous.com/thinking-out-loud-who-are-the-coalition-for-m
  11. http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/the-lay-scientist/2012/feb/20/1
  12. http://www.publicwhip.org.uk/division.php?date=2013-02-05&number=151&mpn=Andrew_Bridgen
  13. http://www.publicwhip.org.uk/division.php?date=2013-05-21&number=11&mpn=Andrew_Bridgen

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