THE Prime Minister today defended the Conservative candidate for Darlington after his teenage views on homosexuality, women’s promiscuity and guns were exposed.

Blog posts published by Peter Cuthbertson in the 2000s were reported by a national newspaper after he wrote that increasing the amount of guns would help improve morality in society.

One blog post stated: “The more influence morality has over a man’s conduct, the less need there is for the state to control it. Crime can be reduced by many police, many laws, tougher sentences and more guns.”

In another 2002 post, Mr Cuthbertson heralded a “courageous priest jailed in Sweden for preaching against homosexuality” and accused the government of using the Ulrika Jonsson rape case to “cash in on public sympathy” to introduce a consent stipulation to sex attacks legislation.

He added: “Worse, defendants will now be restricted in bringing up the woman’s sexual history. Of course, it is relevant how promiscuous a woman is in determining how likely it was she consented.”

Another post claimed that “left-wing students, pensioners, nurses, doctors, teachers, local council workers and so on seem to conduct never-ending campaigns to seize more money from other people.”

Speaking to The Northern Echo, the 33-year-old Tory candidate distanced himself from the blog he wrote 15 years ago.

He said: “I made those comments on a blog as a teenager and I definitely don’t have all the same views as my adolescent self.

“The Conservative Party has changed a lot since I was a Darlington teenager in 2002 and so have I.

“I recall I was supportive of military intervention in Iraq and of Section 28 then – not positions I now hold.”

He added: “On my views in 2017, I strongly support the Conservative Party manifesto, which commits to ensuring victims of sexual offences are cross-examined before their trial to ensure they can avoid any distress from appearing in court.

“I support much tougher prison sentences for rape, for hate crimes and for other serious, prolific offenders and have campaigned on these issues for four years through the Centre for Crime Prevention.”

During the Prime Minister’s visit to Guisborough, east Cleveland yesterday, she was quizzed about Mr Cuthbertson’s comments.

She said: “Peter has made clear his views have changed. I have made my own position very clear on these issues as home secretary for six years and now prime minister.”

Mr Cuthbertson faced further criticism after he was the only Darlington candidate who failed to take part in a lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) hustings event hosted in the town centre’s Voodoo Café on Wednesday night.

The hustings were attended by Ukip candidate Kevin Brack, Labour’s Jenny Chapman, Anne-Marie Curry of the Liberal Democrats and Matthew Snedker of the Green Party.