Eddie Izzard officially launches campaign to become Labour MP to ‘take the fight to the Tories’

Eddie Izzard wears a white outfit with a floral pattern on it

Eddie Izzard has formally launched her bid to be Labour’s next candidate for Sheffield Central MP at the next general election.

Izzard, a long-time Labour Party donor and campaigner, announced her intention to stand for the role in August after current MP Paul Blomfield said he would be standing down at the next election. Unless an earlier one is called, the next election isn’t due until January 2025.

If successful in her campaign bid, Eddie Izzard would become the first openly trans person elected to parliament. Jamie Wallis holds the title of Britain’s first openly trans MP after he bravely came out in March, just over two years since he was elected as ​​the Conservative MP for Bridgend in December 2019.

Izzard said in a statement that she felt compelled to formally join the race to replace Blomfield and “take the fight to the Tories”.

“Sheffield has a proud history, showing grit and determination in overcoming adversities and it was the wit and generosity of the people of this city that made me feel welcome when I first arrived in 1980 – the year the Leadmill opened,” Izzard said.

“I’m standing to be the next Labour MP for Sheffield Central to support the city that has supported me. To take the fight to the Tories and get Keir Starmer into Number 10.”

Eddie Izzard has strong ties to Sheffield since she first arrived in the city in the 1980s when she began studying accountancy and financial management with mathematics at university.

She later left the court to pursue her comedy career, and Izzard credited Sheffield with inspiring her to “run 43 marathons around the UK for Sport Relief”.

The Doctor Jekyll star added that “12 years of Tory rule” has left Sheffield feeling like “its voice doesn’t matter”.

She vowed a Labour government will “embolden Sheffield to achieve its true potential” and that she’s the “right person to build on” Blomfield’s “tireless work for this city”.

“Labour ideals of fairness and equality have been at the core of my life,” Izzard said.

“Opportunities that began right here in Sheffield have encouraged me to travel the world, performing in four languages, in forty-five countries, bringing people together.”

Eddie Izzard has a real shot to become Sheffield Central’s next MP, since no selection process has been formally started by the Labour Party to succeed Blomfield.

Anti-trans lobbyist Kellie-Jay Keen, known by alias Posie Parker, said in September that she has “every intention of running against” Izzard wherever she may be as an “independent”. Keen also promised her campaign would be based on “repealing the Gender Recognition Act (GRA)” and that she intended to “erase the world gender”.

Canterbury MP Rosie Duffield allegedly told attendees at the Labour Conference in September that she didn’t believe Eddie Izzard is a woman. She also reportedly threatened to leave the party if the comedian was selected to stand in the next general election on an all-women shortlist.