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Fury over FG man rant on gay marriage

A FINE Gael politician sparked outrage last night by claiming that same-sex marriage was a "disease".

The majority of Dublin City Council has pledged its support in the campaign for equal marriage rights, voting for gay couples to be given full marriage rights.

However Cllr Bill Tormey, right, who is a consultant at Beaumont Hospital, stunned some of his colleagues by saying that homosexuality was once perceived as being a "disease".

He said marriage among lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people is "philosophically incorrect" due to its inability to produce children.

He explained that although he believes the rights for LGBT people have come a long way, marriage among the homosexual population does not provide the same biological outcome as marriages between heterosexual couples.

However, Cllr Rebecca Moynihan (Lab) described as "shocking" the views expressed by some of the Fine Gael councillors.

"Tormey's views are deeply insulting. He has basically said that only valid marriages are those that produce children. The attitudes expressed by some of the Fine Gael councillors are shocking," she said.

Despite Cllr Tormey's statement, there was overwhelming backing for gay rights.

Cllr Andrew Montague (Lab) argued that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender "people have been excluded from marriage" for too long in Ireland.

The motion was passed with 38 votes in favour, 4 against and 1 abstained.

Nine councillors were not present.

In response to the motion being passed, LGBT support group the Gay and Lesbian Equality Network (GLEN) issued a statement welcoming the decision.

hnews@herald.ie