Stephen Crabb

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Stephen Crabb is the Conservative MP for Preseli Pembrokeshire. He was first elected to Parliament in 2005. He was appointed Secretary of State for Work and Pensions in March 2016.

Abortion

In May 2008 in the abortion amendments to the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill (now Act), Stephen Crabb voted for the abortion time limit to be lowered to 12 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.

Mr Crabb 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 Stephen Crabb 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.

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. Stephen Crabb replied:

"Climate change is the greatest challenge facing mine and my children's generations. It does not merely represent a crisis fifty years from now but poses imminent, serious challengers here and now."[6]

Religion

Faith based Adoption Agencies

In 2007, Stephen Crabb signed Early Day Motion 742 calling on the government to exclude "faith based" adoption agencies from the Equality Act to avoid such agencies being forced to consider gay couples.[7]

Christian Action, Research and Education (CARE)

Mr Crabb (who was himself a CARE intern[8]) was one of a number of MPs who registered their employment of interns from the Christian charity group Christian Action, Research and Education (CARE). Described by the Independent as a 'right wing Christian group', CARE were investigated by the Charity Commission and the House of Commons standards watchdog for lobbying activities, specifically related to the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill.

CARE also campaigned against the repeal of Section 28, which banned the "promotion" of homosexuality in schools, and helped defeat laws on assisted dying in the House of Lords. Its work has been condemned in the Lords as "propaganda".[9]

In April 2016, Mr Crabb gave an interview to local newspaper the Western Telegraph[10]. In the context of criticism of his links to CARE, and the attribution to him of a quote about gay "cures", Mr Crabb stated:

"Whatever personal beliefs I have, religious or otherwise, homophobia is not a part of it and I don’t believe in gay cure therapy.
"Yes I’m a Christian, I’ve got very clear views on that but believing in gay cure therapies is not what I believe and has never been what I believe."

In July 2016, during his campaign for the Conservative Party leadership, Mr Crabb told a BBC interviewer that a quote supposedly by him supporting gay "cures" was "fabricated" and that the idea that being gay was something to be cured was "reprehensible" and had "never been part of anything I believe": http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-36712520

Blasphemy Law

On 6th May 2008, Stephen Crabb voted against a Lords amendment to abolish the common law offences of blasphemy and blasphemous libel[11]. The amendment was nonetheless passed by a vote of 378 to 57.

Conservative Christian Fellowship

In December 2015, Mr Crabb gave the annual Wilberforce address to the Conservative Christian Fellowship. He was reported to have said "The answer to the seduction of ISIL is not a greater dose of secularism that delegitimises their faith in the public space," and that "marginalisation of religion in our national life risks pushing more young Muslims into the arms of ISIL". However, he also criticised the "shrill and angry Christian club which doesn't like how society is changing around them".[12][13]

Same-Sex Marriage

Stephen Crabb voted against the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill at both its second reading in February 2013[14] and its third reading in May 2013[15].

References

  1. http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200607/cmselect/cmsctech/1045/104502.htm
  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=Stephen_Crabb
  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://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/climate-change-what-mps-think--a-to-c-424376.html
  7. http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2006-07/742
  8. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1975933/Christian-fundamentalists-fighting-spiritual-battle-in-Parliament.html
  9. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/exclusive-rightwing-christian-group-pays-for-commons-researchers-802607.html
  10. http://www.westerntelegraph.co.uk/news/14410614.EXCLUSIVE_INTERVIEW__Stephen_Crabb_MP___I_do_not_and_have_never_believed_in_gay_cure_therapy_/
  11. http://www.publicwhip.org.uk/division.php?date=2008-05-06&number=170&display=allvotes
  12. http://www.christiantoday.com/article/growing.secularism.pushes.muslims.towards.isis.tory.cabinet.minister/72956.htm
  13. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/dec/08/britains-secular-society-pushes-muslims-towards-isis-says-tory-minister
  14. http://www.publicwhip.org.uk/division.php?date=2013-02-05&number=151&mpn=Stephen_Crabb
  15. http://www.publicwhip.org.uk/division.php?date=2013-05-21&number=11&mpn=Stephen_Crabb

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