KATE Forbes has been announced as Scotland’s Deputy First Minister as John Swinney unveils his new Cabinet.

She takes over the role from Shona Robison, who has resigned from the position but will remain in Cabinet.

However, Forbes’s appointment has upset some with the Scottish Greens pointing to “the appointment of a Deputy First Minister with deeply conservative views”.

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Here’s what Swinney’s new deputy has said on a range of social issues.

Same-sex marriage

During last year’s SNP leadership contest, Forbes said she would have voted against gay marriage in Scotland.

In an interview with The Scotsman, she said she would not have supported equal marriage as a “matter of conscience” if she had been an MSP at the time.

She said: “I believe that it should be a conscience vote because of its profound significance in all mainstream faiths.

“I think for me, Angela Merkel is the example I would follow, I would have voted, as a matter of conscience, along the lines of a mainstream teaching in most major religions that marriage is between a man and a woman.

“But I would have respected and defended the democratic choice that was made. It is a legal right now and I am a servant of democracy, I am not a dictator.”

In a separate interview with BBC Radio Scotland, she said she was a “servant of democracy” and stressed that she would defend the “legal commitment” the country had made to equal marriage.

Abortion laws

In an interview with ITV, Forbes was asked if she supported the right to have an abortion under current laws.

She said: “I couldn’t conceive of having an abortion myself. I’ve seen my baby at 12 weeks and 20 weeks but yes, I defend the right of women to make use of that legal provision to access abortion.”

She was further asked if this meant she would defend the current law which allows women to have an abortion during the first 24 weeks of pregnancy.

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“My position is that I wouldn’t change the law as it stands.”

Asked about legislation put forward by Green MSP Gillian Mackay (below) aiming to stop anti-abortion protesters from gathering outside clinics, Forbes commented: “I think with the bill the basis of my position is that nobody seeks a termination lightly.

The National:

“There are emotionally vulnerable women seeking these terminations and they should do so free of fear and harassment.

“In that sense, the purpose of the bill makes sense. Any bill that is good law needs to make sure its targeted and that’s where I’ve said I’m happy to work with [Mackay].”

The buffer zone legislation recently passed Stage 1 and Forbes voted in favour of the legislation.

Children out of wedlock

The new Deputy First Minister also previously said it was “up to” individuals whether they had children outside of marriage although said it was something she would “avoid”.

Asked by Sky News for her views on having children out of wedlock, she told the broadcaster: “It’s entirely up to them. It’s something that I would seek to avoid for me personally.

“But it doesn’t fuss me, it doesn’t put me up nor down. The choices that other people make is (up to them).

“In terms of my faith, my faith would say that sex is for marriage and that’s the approach I would practice.”

She added: “For me, it would be wrong according to my faith, but for you I have no idea what your faith is. So, in a free society you can do what you want.”

Gender reform

During the leadership race, Forbes (below) also said she would not have voted in favour of the Scottish Government’s Gender Reform Bill.

The National: Scottish National Party leadership election

She told the BBC she had “significant concerns” about self-identification for transgender people in Scotland and said she was unlikely to launch a legal challenge against the UK Government for its use of a Section 35 order.

The Court of Session ultimately did rule the UK Government could block Scotland’s gender reforms from becoming law.

Forbes previously said: “I have been on record saying I had significant concerns and therefore the bill in its current form I would have struggled to vote for.

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“I would not have been able to vote for the principle of self-ID.”

However, she added that she “understands the principle which is that the UK Government should not overturn Scottish legislation”.

What have the Greens said?

After John Swinney (below) was officially sworn in as Scotland’s seventh First Minister, the Greens called on him to reaffirm his support for a “fairer, greener, more equal Scotland”.

The National: John Swinney with the Seals of Scotland as he is sworn in as First Minister (Andrew Milligan/PA)

The party’s co-leader Patrick Harvie said: “There will be many people across our country who will be very concerned and who will want to know that this Scottish Government remains committed to a greener and more equal future for Scotland.

“When it comes to delivering fairer and more progressive taxation, a just transition from oil and gas and a watertight ban on so-called conversion therapy, it is vital that this government does not dilute the longstanding commitments that it has made.

“These are the values that the Scottish Greens remain committed to and that we will work for every day. The Scotland that we want to build is one where everyone is free to be themselves and where climate action is at the forefront of our politics.

“The First Minister must lay out his programme and his vision for Scotland, and where these values lie within it.”