MP Natalie Elphicke defects to Labor from Tories

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MP Natalie Elphicke defects to Labor from Tories

Natalie Elphicke MP

3 minutes reading

Natalie Elphicke has become the latest MP to leave the Conservatives and defect to the Labor Party.

The MP for Dover announced on Wednesday that she had left the Tories because the party had “become a byword for incompetence and division”, while Keir Starmer’s Labor Party had “changed beyond recognition” since the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn, who resigned. in 2020.

She becomes the second MP to leave the Tories for Labor in the space of a few weeks, after Dan Poulter, the MP for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich, did so at the end of last month. His main reason for defecting was what he described as Tory failures on the NHS.

Christian Wakeford, the MP for Bury South, switched from the Conservatives to Labor in 2022.

In a statement, Elphicke said: “When I was elected in 2019, the Conservative Party occupied the center stage of British politics.

‘The party was about building the future and making the most of the opportunities that awaited our country.

‘A lot of things have changed since then.

‘The elected Prime Minister [Boris Johnson] was deposed by a coup led by the unelected Rishi Sunak. Under Rishi Sunak, the Conservatives have become synonymous with incompetence and division. The middle ground has been abandoned and the key promises of the 2019 manifesto have been left behind.”

Elphicke, who was elected to the House of Commons in 2019, attacked her former party’s record on stopping illegal immigration and said the government was “failing to keep our borders secure”.

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She also criticized what she described as the government’s “inability to build the homes we need” and homelessness levels, and said Labor had asked her to help advise the party leadership on housing policy.

However, she will not contest the next general election. Labor has already selected Mike Tapp as its candidate for the Kent seat.

In Prime Minister’s Questions just after Elphicke’s resignation was announced, Starmer said: ‘One week a Tory MP, who is also a doctor, says the Prime Minister cannot be trusted on the NHS and joins Labour.

“And the following week the Tory MP for Dover, on the front line of the small boat crisis, says the Prime Minister cannot be trusted with our borders and joins Labour. What is the point of this failed government continuing waver?”

Elphicke is one of several Conservative figures to have switched to Labor ahead of the next general election.

Richard Walker, the boss of supermarket Iceland, announced earlier this year that he had stopped donating to the Conservatives to side with Starmer’s party. In February, PoliticsHome revealed that former Tory minister Nick Boles had started advising shadow ministers on preparing for government, and on Tuesday he introduced shadow chancellor Rachel Reeves during a speech in London.

Conservative MPs were stunned by the announcement. One told PoliticsHome it was “insane” and described their former colleague as “more right-wing than Lee” – a reference to Lee Anderson, the outspoken MP who left the Tories for reform of the right-wing party earlier this year.

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