Hugh Grant campaigns for Corbyn days after hitting streets for LibDems

Labour, Actually: Indecisive actor Hugh Grant campaigns for Jeremy Corbyn’s party just two days after hitting the streets for the Lib Dems only to then accuse them of lying on social media

  • Love Actually star joined Labour candidate Faiza Shaheen in north-east London 
  • On Sunday he joined Lib Dems Luciana Berger in Finchley and Golders Green
  • Shortly afterwards the actor criticised the Liberal Democrats on social media 

Hugh Grant was seen on the campaign trail with Labour today, just days after going out canvassing for the Liberal Democrats – only to then accuse them of lying on social media.

The Love Actually star was met by cheering crowds as he joined Labour candidate Faiza Shaheen in the Chingford and Woodford Green constituency, north-east London, on Wednesday evening.

It comes just days after Mr Grant surprised voters in London’s Finchley and Golders Green constituency as he knocked doors with candidate Luciana Berger on Sunday, and was also seen out with Chuka Umunna in Westminster on Monday.

Despite pictures of the Hollywood star appearing to enjoy his foray into politics, he later criticised the party on Twitter after it claimed that it was the only one that could ‘take seats off the Tories’ at the general election.

He replied that this was ‘not true’ and that he advocates tactical voting to unseat as many Conservatives as possible.

Hugh Grant campaigns with Labour candidate for Chingford and Woodford Green Faiza Shaheen on Wednesday evening

Hugh Grant canvassing with Liberal Democrat candidate for Finchley and Golders Green, Luciana Berger, on Sunday

The actor is an advocate of tactical voting to prevent a Conservative majority at the election, and has urged voters to back any candidate that could cost the Tories a seat.

Despite the cheers that greeted his arrival on Wednesday night, Mr Grant did face questions why he was supporting an allegedly ‘racist’ party from a small number of protesters on two separate occasions.

In recent comments made to the Jewish Chronicle newspaper, Grant accused the Labour leadership of not doing ‘anything like nearly enough’ to remove the ‘anti-Semitic element’ within the party. 

While delivering an outdoor speech to a crowd of dozens of Labour supporters, Grant was asked if local Jewish residents should vote for the party.

In response Ms Shaheen said she and the party were ‘very sorry’ about ‘mistakes’ made over the speed of responding to complaints of anti-Semitism.

She added: ‘I am being subject to Islamophobia and it’s been really upsetting actually being a woman of colour running here and being subject to the racism.’

The Love Actually actor surprised voters in London’s Finchley and Golders Green constituency as he knocked doors with candidate Luciana Berger on Saturday

Ms Shaheen urged local residents to back her so she could help address the ‘underlying causes of Brexit’.

She added: ‘We have to do something about those huge regional inequalities, we have to do something about the lack of investment in our NHS, in our schools, we have to do something to tackle the way in which we talk about immigration and the endless scapegoating.’

After his own speech, Grant was challenged by a man as he got into a nearby waiting car with Ms Shaheen.

The protester, 19-year-old Harry Saul Markham, who carried a placard bearing the message ‘Corbyn supported terrorists. Unfit to be PM’, repeatedly asked Grant why he was supporting a ‘racist’ party.

Around three other individuals also held placards with critical messages of Labour, with all appearing again as Grant and Ms Shaheen gave further speeches at a second location in the constituency.

The Notting Hill actor urged people to vote tactically to ensure the Conservatives did not win the election.

Mr Grant campaigning yesterday with Lib Dem Chuka Umunna in the Cities of London and Westminster seat he is  contesting

He claimed a Tory victory would lead to the ‘catastrophe’ of a no-deal Brexit that would cause unemployment, an end to manufacturing, the end of peace in Northern Ireland and food shortages.

‘Everywhere in the country where a Tory can be beaten, he has to be beaten. And there is in different constituencies, different contenders,’ Grant said.

The actor revealed he would be voting for the Liberal Democrats in his own constituency as they are the nearest challengers to the Conservatives.

Grant avoided commenting when asked if Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn would make a good prime minister, and said a hung parliament would be his ‘dream result’ and that he wanted a second Brexit referendum.

Brexiteer and local Conservative candidate Iain Duncan Smith, who represented the Chingford and Woodford Green area for 27 years, was described as ‘ghastly’ by the actor.

He said Ms Shaheen stood a ‘fantastic chance’ of beating her Tory rival, with a potential victory being a ‘marvellous Michael Portillo moment’.

Grant described the area as a ‘noisy, feisty and quite fun place to do some canvassing’.

Asked about how the public responded to famous faces joining political campaigns, he said: ‘I can see why it’s annoying and I used to find it annoying myself. I just happen to think this really is a proper emergency and I couldn’t really sit still.

‘I don’t think I deserve more of a voice than anyone else, but I don’t think I deserve less. I’ve lived here all my life, I’ve paid my taxes like a good boy, I don’t really see why I should be silent.’

 

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