The Home Office has defended proposals to allow gay marriages after Welllingborough’s MP called them “completely nuts”.
Peter Bone urged the Church of England to block plans for same-sex weddings during a Parliamentary discussion on the matter.
Speaking exclusively to the Evening Telegraph last night, Mr Bone said: “It’s just a simple thing that a marriage is between a man and a woman, therefore that’s it.
“It’s not anti-civil partnership or anything like that, I just take a view that a marriage is between a man and a woman.
“I’m not sure where any political party had it in their manifesto they were going to redefine marriage.
“I’m all for civil partnerships and equal rights but the definition of marriage is a union between a man and a woman.
“I’m just saying unless you are going to redefine marriage there’s no such thing as a same-sex marriage because a marriage is between a man and a woman.”
Tony Baldry MP, representing the Church Commissioners, told fellow MPs the Church of England would make detailed submissions to a consultation on the proposals.
He added: “So far as the Church of England, the Roman Catholic Church and many other faith groups are concerned, marriage is a union between one man and one woman.
That is the point we are putting forward responsibly and clearly in the consultation paper.”
And speaking on the matter at House of Commons questions, Mr Bone said: “Wouldn’t it just be very simple to write back and say ‘Marriage is between a man and a woman, so this is completely nuts?’.”
A Home Office spokesman later said: “If a couple love each other and want to commit to a life together, this Government believes they should have the option of a civil marriage irrespective of their sexual orientation.
“We are working closely with all those who have an interest in the area to understand their views.
“We are absolutely not changing religious marriage, or requiring religious groups to go against their traditions.
“Our consultation will look at how to open up civil marriage to same sex couples.”
Prime Minister David Cameron has already given his firm backing to same-sex marriage.
Speaking at last year’s Conservative party conference, the prime minister said: ‘I don’t support gay marriage in spite of being a Conservative.
“I support gay marriage because I am a Conservative.’
Lord Carey, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, called for signatories to a petition opposing the move through the group Coalition for Marriage (C4M).
Almost 65,000 people have already lent their name to the campaign.