Wednesday, 14 Nov 2012, 16:47
British Michael Cashman head of EP's LGBT's rights intergroup said that after giving a lot of thought he will not endorse Tonio Borg for the EU nomination.
Yesterday before Borg hearing at the European Parliament in Brussels, Cashman stated that the Maltese designate commissioner "personal views would not affect his actions". He even tweeted that "if youjudge before, you lose the argument".
In a statement published today on his website, MEP Cashman said:
"I have given this a lot of thought, and given the doubts expressed to me by many—and especially by women who feel strongly about his negative track record on sexual and reproductive health rights— I’ve come to the conclusion that I cannot endorse Tonio Borg for the European Commission.
With regard to LGBT rights, he gave us many reassurances on the blood donation of gay men and his support of future initiatives for LGBT people. But it is worrying that Mr Borg failed to support the horizontal anti-discrimination Directive, which is backed by all members of the European Commission since it was proposed in 2008.
On sexual and reproductive health rights, too many doubts still remain, and whilst he gave us reassurances that his views wouldn’t cloud his judgment, many feel his previous actions don’t warrant entrusting Mr Borg with the public health portfolio."
The veteran Labour Euro MP Michael Cashman has also announced that he will be standing down at the next European Election in 2014. He will also be standing down from Labour’s ruling National Executive Committee, which he has been a member of since 1998. He made the announcement at this year’s Labour Party Conference in Manchester, which he chaired.
First elected in 1999, Cashman has been Labour’s sole West Midlands representative and longest-serving Labour MEP in the European Parliament since 2009.