Mark Francois

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Mark Francois is the Conservative MP for Rayleigh and Wickford. He entered Parliament at the 2001 general election as MP of the predecessor seat of Rayleigh.

Abortion

In May 2008 in the abortion amendments to the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill (now Act), Mark Francois voted for the abortion time limit to be lowered to 20 weeks against scientific and medical consensus which is currently 24 weeks[1]. After four separate parliamentary votes on varying time limits, the majority of MPs voted to keep the abortion time limit at 24 weeks, in keeping with scientific and medical consensus, hence no abortion amendments were added to the bill.

Mitochondrial Donation

In February 2015 Mark Francois voted against allowing mitochondrial donation, which would allow women who carried mitochondrial diseases to give birth to children who would not inherit the disease[2]. If allowed, mitochondrial donation would be regulated by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) meaning that there would be ongoing assessment of the safety and efficacy of such procedures. An October 2014 briefing report by the HFEA, which had been investigating the issue for three years, stated that there was no evidence to show that mitochondrial donation was unsafe[3]. However, some religious groups had said that such procedures should not be allowed[4]. The majority of MPs voted in favour of allowing mitochondrial donation.

Homeopathy

Mark Francois was one of 206 MPs to sign the March 2007 Early Day Motion 1240 calling for the positive recognition of NHS homeopathic hospitals[5].

Climate Change

In 2006, MPs were asked three questions by the Rough Guide's Mark Ellingham on how seriously they took climate change as politicians and as responsible, active citizens. Mark Francois replied:

" Climate change is undoubtedly one of the biggest challenges facing the people of this country and indeed the populations of our international neighbours. Having served on the House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) in the previous Parliament this made me particularly aware of this threat to our collective future."[6]

Blasphemy Law

On 6th May 2008, Mark Francois voted against a Lords amendment to abolish the common law offences of blasphemy and blasphemous libel[7]. The amendment was nonetheless passed by a vote of 378 to 57.

Same-Sex Marriage

Mark Francois voted against the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill at both its second reading in February 2013[8] and its third reading in May 2013[9].

References

  1. http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200607/cmselect/cmsctech/1045/104502.htm
  2. http://www.publicwhip.org.uk/division.php?date=2015-02-03&number=147&mpn=Mark_Francois
  3. http://www.hfea.gov.uk/docs/2014-10-01_Mitochondrial_donation__an_introductory_briefing_note_-_final.pdf
  4. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-31063500
  5. http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2006-07/1240
  6. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/climate-change-what-mps-think---d-to-f-424395.html
  7. http://www.publicwhip.org.uk/division.php?date=2008-05-06&number=170&display=allvotes
  8. http://www.publicwhip.org.uk/division.php?date=2013-02-05&number=151&mpn=Mark_Francois
  9. http://www.publicwhip.org.uk/division.php?date=2013-05-21&number=11&mpn=Mark_Francois

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