POLITICS

Tory MP Attacks 'Immoral Behaviour' Of Voters

01/10/2014 04:17 BST | Updated 01/10/2014 10:00 BST
PA/PA Archive
Sir Gerald Howarth MP speaks during a tribute to Baroness Margaret Thatcher in the House of Commons, London.

A Conservative MP has attacked the "immoral behaviour" of unmarried young women and the fathers of their children who hope to have housing and financial support from the welfare state without first turning to their extended family.

Gerald Howarth, the MP for Aldershot, told a meeting on the fringes of the Conservative Party conference in Birmingham on Tuesday that too often people turned to the government for help that they did not deserve.

He said: "There's a very serious requirement here to get some moral underpinning, some virtue and some determination to try to explain to people, that if you want to live this immoral lifestyle, fine. It is immoral, it is wrong. But you can jolly well pay for it."

"I don't see why the rest of the taxpayer should have to pay for your lifestyle out of their taxed income. I think it's utterly wrong. We, as politicians, in my view, have got to be prepared to be a lot bolder."

Howarth said he thought it was a "failure" of the leadership of the Church of England for not being "judgemental" enough about how people chose to organise their family life.

"i spend my time, people being judgemental about me, especially when I talk about things like immigration. No one hesitates being judgmental about me. Well I think it's time that we started being judgemental. We do need to tell children the difference between right and wrong."

Howarth said he despaired at the "decline" of the Church and that the new religion was football. "Where is the moral dimension coming from?" he asked. "Now, of course, we are paying a massive price for multiculturalism in this country, where people were encouraged to bring all their cultural accruements with them."

"In the [United] States it's not the case. You have to salute the flag. If you fail to salute the flag and if you do anything to violate the flag in America you are in deep trouble."

Howarth praised David Cameron for his "outstanding" decision to proclaim that the UK was a Christian country. However he added: "I would take one side swipe at him. i think he has done damage on gay marriage. I don't think that was a good move."