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Sunday, 8 November 1998

Gay Politicians: UK Minister Nick Brown

In the UK, any public suggestion of homosexuality would once have been a kiss of death: no more.

Prime Minister now says that errors of judgement may be a "resigning issue", but orientation is not. The PM is standing by his Agriculture minister Nick Brown, who has revealed that he is gay.

From BBC News:
Cabinet rallies around gay minister
Cabinet colleagues have been quick to voice their support for Agriculture Minister Nick Brown, who has revealed he is gay. Their backing for Mr Brown closely follows the line set by Prime Minister Tony Blair, who declared he was standing by his minister. 
By lending Mr Brown its full support, the government's line appears to be that "errors of judgement" may be a resigning issue for ministers, but their sexuality is not.
Mr Blair's official spokesman said the prime minister was "satisfied" with Mr Brown's account of his relationship with a former male partner.
It was his former partner's attempts to sell a story about the relationship to the News of the World newspaper which forced Mr Brown to publicly declare his sexuality and to deny he had paid for sex with the man.
Once again, the lesson is clear: the simplest way to avoid blackmail over sexuality, is to out oneself.