Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn was greeted by a protester dressed as Sesame Street character Elmo, as he arrived to cast his vote in Islington with his wife Laura Alvarez.
Independent parliamentary candidate for Uxbridge and South Ruislip Bobby “Elmo” Smith filmed his sister Sherrie as she dressed up as the character to visit the polling station at Pakeman Primary School on Thursday.
Video that Mr Smith, a fathers’ rights activist, posted from the scene shows his sister shaking Mr Corbyn’s hand, before being led away by police.
— Bobby Elmo Smith (@bobbysmith2765) December 12, 2019
Mr Smith is a single father and full-time student, and said he has protested on the morning of general elections since 2015 to highlight the need for family law reform and campaign for male mental health.
He told the PA news agency: “I’ve done it for Theresa May in 2017 and David Cameron in 2015, met them at the polling station, and I just thought that this time I should go meet Jeremy Corbyn.
“If I could get my sister to dress up then I could try to speak to him. I’ll be dressed as [Elmo] tonight.
“Jeremy Corbyn shook Elmo’s hand, she said to him are you going to address father’s rights, he said yes. If he becomes prime minister, as far as I’m concerned that’s an agreement to address fathers’ rights.
“He was a good sport, he could have just walked in and ignored Elmo. That was worth going there for.”
— Bobby Elmo Smith (@bobbysmith2765) November 19, 2019
Mr Smith has previously run for election in 2015 and 2017, standing in David Cameron’s constituency of Witney and Theresa May’s constituency of Maidenhead respectively.
He is standing against Boris Johnson in Uxbridge and South Ruislip on Thursday.
The candidate said: “I want to raise awareness, it’s why I always pick the Prime Minister’s [seat]. I normally only get a handful of votes, it’s not to get elected.
“It’s great that whatever your issue is you can stand for election and shout about what you want to.”
A spokeswoman for the Met Police said that no arrests were made, and that no official complaint has been made that the department is aware of.