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Lambeth Lib Dems are delighted to announce that Chuka Umunna has today joined the Liberal Democrats and will now represent Streatham constituency as a Lib Dem MP.
Chuka is the first Member of Parliament to cross the floor of the House of Commons to join the Liberal Democrats since 2001. He has been the MP for Streatham since 2010 and won 68.5 percent of the vote when re-elected in the 2017 General Election.
Commenting on his decision to join the Liberal Democrats, Chuka Umunna MP said:
"I have chosen to join the Liberal Democrats because it is at the forefront of a renewed, progressive and internationalist movement in British politics that shares my values.
"I am convinced the Liberal Democrats, as the spearheard of a broader progressive movement in civil society, offer the best chance to improve the lives of those I represent as well as countless other citizens across our country.
"I'd like to thank both Vince Cable and all of Lambeth Liberal Democrats who have been incredibly open and welcoming. I'm really looking forward to working with them."
The Liberal Democrats have experienced a revival in Lambeth in 2019. In April, the party finished just 19 votes behind Labour in a local council by-election in Thornton ward, achieving a 27 per cent swing from Labour compared to the 2018 result. Then in the European elections in May, the Liberal Democrats topped the polls in Lambeth with 33 percent of the vote, ahead of Labour in second place on 22 percent.
Helen Thompson, who is the Lib Dem Campaign Leader in Streatham, said:
“Stopping Brexit is the goal that matters more to me than anything, so I am extremely proud to welcome Chuka Umunna MP as our newest member of the Liberal Democrats. Chuka has for years been a consistent, compelling and high profile voice against Brexit. He is also a social democrat who agrees with us on core liberal issues, such as tackling inequalities that limit life chances for so many people.
“We welcome Chuka with open arms as our first Liberal Democrat MP for Streatham. I am looking forward to working closely with him to build on our fantastic success in the European elections.”
Notes to Editors:
1. Chuka Umunna MP is one of 20,000 new Lib Dem members who have joined the party since the local elections at the beginning of May 2019.
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As many as 2,000 non-UK EU citizens in Lambeth could have been denied their right to vote at Thursday’s polls, it has emerged. Stories flooded in across the country on 23rd May as EU citizens reported they were turned away from polling stations in the UK’s European elections.
Non-UK EU citizens living in the UK are obliged to fill in an extra form, the UC1 form to be allowed to vote in the UK. Some EU citizens in Lambeth reported missing the deadline to register because they received the form from Lambeth Council after the 7th May deadline had already passed.
However, even EU citizens who managed to return their forms in time were turned away at polling stations. Streatham Parliamentary Candidate Helen Thompson spoke to the Press Association and the Local Government Chronicle about the difficulties that Lambeth's EU citizens faced in registering to vote in these elections.
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On Sunday it was confirmed that the Liberal Democrats captured one in three (32.6%) of the votes in Lambeth, more than 10% ahead of the Labour Party (22.4%) who have traditionally seen the borough as a London stronghold.
These results come in the wake of widespread reports that up to 2,000 EU citizens across Lambeth may have been denied the right to vote.