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Zac Goldmith and Vince Cable to battle it out as Richmond Park seat faces chop
Vince Cable could see his parliamentary seat axed under new Boundary Commission proposals, it has been claimed.
Rumours have been swirling in Westminster today about whether Twickenham MP Dr Cable and Richmond Park MP Zac Goldsmith’s parliamentary constituencies could merge.
The Boundary Commission is due to release its proposals to carve up seats in London to reduce the number from 73 to 68.
It could lead to Dr Cable and Mr Goldsmith fighting for a new Richmond and Twickenham constituency at the next general election.
The Boundary Commission report, embargoed until midnight tonight but doing the rounds online already, said the number of voters in Richmond was too small for two parliamentary seats.
It said: “We also noted that the existing Twickenham and Richmond Park constituencies each had an electorate within 5 per cent of the electoral quota, but that it was not possible to leave the Richmond Park constituency unchanged, as we had decided to include the Kingston-upon-Thames part of the constituency in the south London sub-region.
“We propose to include the remaining 11 Richmond-upon-Thames wards in a Richmond and Twickenham constituency, including four [St Margarets and North Twickenham, South Twickenham, Twickenham Riverside, and West Twickenham] from the existing Twickenham constituency.”
Parliament passed legislation in February stating the independent Boundary Commission must review constituency boundaries and make recommendations to the Government by October 2013.
It has made initial proposals for London, in which only four of the 73 existing constituencies would not change, and will launch a consultation tomorrow.
The number of seats in England will need to reduce from 533 to 502 and each one must have between 72,819 and 80,473 voters.
It has been claimed that up to 50 MPs could lose their constituencies under the proposals.
The report was leaked onto the Guido Fawkes political blog today. MPs were supposed to have a day to read it before the plans were made public at midnight.
Voters will get the chance to have their say during a 12-week consultation from September 13 to December 5.