The MP for Westmorland and Lonsdale refused to clarify whether he thought homosexuality was a sin, instead dodged the question when he was quizzed live on air in an interview with Channel 4’s Cathy Newman.
As the MP has sought to portray his party as the only credible opposition to the Conservatives and Theresa May’s ‘hard Brexit’ in the wake of the snap general election, his refusal to clarify his views on the issue may cost him precious votes.
The politician previously claimed “we’re all sinners” when asked about the issue by the presenter back in 2015.
And pressing the issue, Ms Newman asked: “A while back I asked you if you thought that homosexuality was a sin and you struggled to answer.
His comments comes after he billed the Lib Dems as a party which could affect real change
“Now you've had a while to consider that question, what is the answer?”
And his stance remained ambiguous as he said: “I’m not in a position to make theological announcements.
“I’m not going to spend my time talking theology or making pronouncements.”
Politicians react to Theresa May's snap general election Wed, April 19, 2017
UK Prime Minister Theresa May has announced her intention to hold an early general election on June 8
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Theresa May has called for a snap general election
She continued to grill Mr Farron, saying: “I asked you three times if homosexuality was a sin and you said ‘we're all sinners’. Is that still the answer?”
He said: “As a Liberal, I'm passionate about equality, about equal marriage and about equal rights for LGBT people, for fighting for LGBT rights, not just in this country but overseas.
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“Just because I'm Christian, it would be a bit boring for everybody to spend the next weeks asking me to make theological announcements that I'm not going to make.”
The MP has sought to portray his party as the only credible opposition to the Conservatives
I’m not in a position to make theological announcements
Presenter Sue Perkins, who is gay herself, poured scorn on the leader’s statement, tweeting: “Tim Farron on C4 news failing to clarify his views on the gay community. ‘We’re all sinners’.
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Her post was retweeted thousands of times.
His comments comes after he billed the Lib Dems as a party which could affect real change, previously saying: “If you want a Britain that is open, tolerant and united, this is your chance.”
The car-crash interview came just hours after the prime minister made the shock announcement by calling a snap election, scheduled for June 8.
The politician previously claimed “we’re all sinners”
Mrs May is seeking to solidify her position and give her a mandate to press on with the tough Brexit negotiations that lie ahead.
And she is thought she has picked an opportune moment when Conservatives are polling their highest support since 1983 and opposition leader Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn’s support is at rock bottom.
While both the Labour leader and Lib Dem leader have welcomed the election, Mr Farron has sought to use the opportunity to further his party’s prospects by portraying them as the only effective opposition.
The MP for Westmorland and Lonsdale refused to clarify whether he thought homosexuality was a sin
During the interview, he branded his political rival not fit for the job, saying: “Theresa May looked across the dispatch and saw in Jeremy Corbyn not just someone who isn’t a plausible prime minister but not even a leader of the opposition and thought it was the political equivalent of taking candy from a baby.
“We know in Jeremy Corbyn not only is he not an alternative prime minister he’s not even an effective leader of the opposition.”
The Lib Dems are hoping to cash in on the lacklustre support for Labour and some heavyweights of the party who lost their seats in 2015 are plotting a political comeback.
Sir Vince Cable and Sir Simon Hughes announced they plan to stand again in their old seats, hoping to claw back some of the seats lost which decimated their party to just eight MPs.