Lib Dem leader Ed Davey says a woman can ‘quite clearly’ have a penis as he is asked about trans rights in radio phone-in
Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey today said women can ‘quite clearly’ have a penis as he waded onto the row over transgender rights.
Sir Ed was asked his views as he took part in a radio phone-in this morning.
A caller called Mary asked him on LBC to explain ‘what is a woman’, saying she was a tactical voter – a group which could help the Lib Dems pick off Tory seats at the next general election.
He replied that ‘the vast majority of people whose biological sex is a woman when they were birth (sic), they feel they’re women … but there’s this very small number of people who don’t feel like that’.
Presenter Nick Ferrari then twice asked: ‘Can a woman have a penis?’ Eventually, Sir Ed replied: ‘Well, quite clearly.’
A called called Mary asked him on LBC to explain ‘what is a woman’, saying she was a tactical voter – a group which could help the Lib Dems pick off Tory seats at the next election.
He added: ‘The truth is, Mary, the vast majority of people whose biological sex is a woman when they were birth, they feel they’re women.
‘So… they feel their gender the same as at birth. But there’s this very small number of people who don’t feel like that. And the law has recognised them for over 20 years now.
‘So this is not a new issue. I know sometimes it seems it, but the law has dealt with this in the right way. The Equality Act is there to, you know, to allow there to be single sex spaces so people can have those single sex spaces, according to the law under the Equality Act.
‘And what I want to do is answer your question directly as I’ve done, Mary, but also to try and take some of the heat out of the question, because there’s a small number of people who actually… they have a tough time.
‘They’re harassed, discriminated against, real serious mental health problems. And I think we need to manage this and think about it and debate it with a bit more maturity and a bit more compassion.’
It comes after Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer last month sought to clarify his stance on transgender issues by stating that 99.9 per cent of women ‘of course haven’t got a penis’.
The Labour leader is under pressure to define his party’s position on gender identity following the fierce row in Scotland over legal reforms.
He has been warned by party strategists that he risks losing the next general election if he continues to face questions about how to define a woman.