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Tory MP not standing in election ‘after saying homosexuality is wrong’

Conservative MP Andrew Turner has represented the Isle of Wight for 16 years.

Conservative MP Andrew Turner has announced he will not be standing at the General Election after he was reported to have told a group of A-Level students that homosexuality was “wrong” and “dangerous to society”.

The 63-year-old is said to have made his comments while visiting politics students at the Christ the King College in Newport, Isle of Wight.

Mr Turner is quitting having represented the island for 16 years.

Student Esther Poucher, an LGBT campaigner, posted on Facebook that she had been “truly shocked” when he said he would not be attending an Isle of Wight Pride event.

She wrote: “He told us that he’d been invited, but wasn’t intending to go. This is because (and this is a direct quote) he thinks that homosexuality is ‘wrong’ and ‘dangerous to society’.

“At this answer, I had to leave. It’s terrifying that in this age and point in our development as a society, there are still people that can’t care enough about a person’s wellbeing to just accept who they are.”

She added: “Yes, we all believe different things, and that’s wonderful. But when that belief treats a group as sub-human, and attempts to take away their fundamental rights, we can’t respect it.”

Mr Turner said in a statement released to the Press Association: “It has been my privilege to serve the people of the Isle of Wight as their Member of Parliament.

“I have been incredibly fortunate to represent such a beautiful constituency. After 16 years I have come to the decision that it is time for a new generation to take up the mantle of representing my fantastic constituents.

“I am grateful for the support I have received from islanders and proud of the record that Conservatives have in delivering for the island.

“In the forthcoming election I will be supporting the Conservative candidate to ensure the strong and stable leadership of Theresa May is returned to Downing Street.”

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