And then there were seventeen: Angela Smith joins the Liberal Democrats

As teased by Jo Swinson, Anglea Smith, the former Labour MP for Sheffield Hillsborough and then for Penistone and Stocksbridge has joined the Liberal Democrats:

She was one of the non-Liberal Democrat MPs who joined Jane Dodds on the campaign trail during the Brecon and Radnorshire by-election.

Jo Swinson welcomed her, saying:

In February, Angela made the brave decision to leave the Labour Party after over forty years of membership, because of the mishandling of anti-Semitism claims and Jeremy Corbyn’s stance on Brexit.

Now, she follows Chuka Umunna, Dr Sarah Wollaston, Dr Phillip Lee and Luciana Berger in joining the Liberal Democrats’ rapidly growing Parliamentary team. We welcome Angela’s commitment to stopping Brexit, and to building a fairer, more liberal society.

The Liberal Democrats have always been an inclusive party, and our doors are open to anyone who shares our liberal values, and our commitment to a fair, free and open society.

Angela Smith said:

I am delighted to be joining Jo Swinson and the Liberal Democrats. We need a more inclusive, tolerant politics for our country that values diversity. The Liberal Democrats are the strongest party to stop Brexit and build a society that gives opportunities to everyone, tackle the climate crisis and invest in our public services.

We are facing a national crisis and people deserve better than the choice of the old two parties. I am relishing continuing my work with the Liberal Democrats to not only fight against Brexit but to also campaign for the constitutional reform needed to mend our broken politics.

Hannah Kitching, the Lib Dem PPC for the seat, has tweeted her welcome:

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