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Posts Tagged ‘Ken Livingstone’

LONDON | I dag väljer London borgmästare. Kommer väljarna straffa den sittande borgmästaren för regeringens misstag?

När regeringen nu tappar i opinionen seglar Labour automatiskt upp som ett attraktivt alternativ för väljarna.

Det har därför blivit av yttersta viktig för premiärministern och det konservativa partiet att borgmästaren Boris Johnson inte förlorar mot Ken Livingstone.

Idag avgörs även om man skall införa direkta borgmästarval i tio andra städer. Resultatet av dessa val är av stor vikt för de konservativa.

Direktvalda borgmästarval ses som strategiskt viktigt för partiet om man skall lyckas vinna tillbaka städer och områden utanför sina traditionella kärnområden.

Och skulle Johnson förlora i London (och partiet lokalt) kommer resultatet spilla över på regeringen. En förlust kommer att tolkas som det första tecknet på en kommande valförlust nationellt för partiet och koalitionsregeringen.

Fraser Nelson, redaktör på The Spectator, skriver:

A pile-up of government errors has followed and, now, confirmation that we are in a double-dip recession. Labour is ten percentage points ahead nationally, and a stunning 19 points in London. The election would be a walkover for Labour were it not for Boris’s popularity among non-Tories, and the contempt which so many Labour voters have for Ken. The question in this election is how fast Boris can swim against the anti-Tory tide.

 […]

Boris’s aides have watched aghast as the government has muddled its way into disaster after disaster. On Friday, Britain loaned £10 billion to the IMF. This was followed on Monday by headlines about even deeper cuts to government in Britain.

[…]

The Mayor matters because he represents a certain strand of Conservatism, unashamed about Tory principles and unafraid of making unpopular arguments. His Toryism is one of tax cuts, standing up for British bankers and defying the European Union when it threatens our prosperity. Boris embodies the rejection of the Blair/Clinton ‘triangulation’ politics, where the least offensive politician is deemed the most successful.

This election was always about more than just London. It is about how we do politics, who fights and who wins. Over the last 20 years, our politics has been reduced into a battle for swing voters in swing seats. This has led our political class in a certain direction, directed by the sat-navs of the opinion polls and focus groups. Boris has defiantly set off in another direction, guided by instinct and brio. And this is why his victory matters so much.

Text och tidskriftsomslaget ovan från The Spectator den 28 april 2012.

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LONDON | Valkampanjen i London är i full gång. Striden står mellan nuvarande borgmästaren Boris Johnson och utmanaren Ken Livingstone.

Till skillnad från så många andra valkampanjer i Storbritannien (eller i Sverige) står striden mellan två ideologiskt tydliga alternativ. Här handlar det inte bara om att trängas i mitten.

Johnson, mannen med frisyren endast en mor kan älska, är betydligt tydligare i sin konservatism (eller snarare libertarianism) än premiärminister David Cameron. Och Ken Livingston tillhör vänstern inom Labour.

Jemima Khan intervjuade de två kandidaterna för New Statesman.  Här ett utdrag från intervjun med Johnson:

“My kind of Toryism,” he continues, ”is about allowing people to get on and do what they are capable of doing, liberating talent and allowing people to prosper and flourish. What I find maddening about the left and socialists generally is that they are all about trying to restrain people and keep them in their boxes.

“Conservative politics, properly done, is a massive liberating force. The wealth gap in this country hugely opened up under Labour and social mobility froze in the last 20 years. It was during that epoch of Blair and Livingstone and the whole boom in credit that things started to go wrong for this country, and what they forgot about was what was really happening to the bottom 20 per cent.

[…]

“I’ll tell you what makes me angry – lefty crap,” he thunders in response. Like? ”Well, like spending £20,000 on a dinner at the Dorchester for Sinn Fein!” Take that, Ken.

[…]

“I am the guy who has concentrated on spending their [the taxpayers’] money where it really counts for Londoners,” he says. ”I haven’t been so arrogant as to squander it on things that would bring no benefit to the people of this city at all, like flying off to bloody Havana and shacking up with Fidel Castro for a while. What is the point of that; how does that help Londoners? Show me the jobs that brought to London. The difference between him and me is that he used huge sums of taxpayers’ money for his own self-publicity – he spent £12m on a freesheet he used to shove through people’s letter boxes, proclaiming his achievements.”

[…]

“I think it is the big things that I am proud of: reducing the cost of London government and focusing the money where it matters. From that flows everything else – delivering the best car scheme in the world, cutting people’s council tax, giving them a 24-hour Freedom Pass.

“We’ve greatly reduced crime, and it hasn’t been easy because it has been a tough period to be mayor. We have still got crime down by 10 per cent; the murder rate is down by about 25 per cent, and you can’t fudge that – so, great credit to the Met and to law enforcement generally. Bus crime is massively down, by 30 per cent; people were getting really hassled on the Tube. We have got a 40 per cent reduction in delays in my four years compared to the previous four years. I am proud of this.”

Läs mer: ”The world is run by monsters” är Khans intervju med Livingstone. Se även ”Ken vs Boris: my verdict”, Boris: quick-fire questions” och “Ken: quick-fire questions”. (Tidskriftsomslaget och alla artiklar är från New Statesman den 13 februari 2012.)

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