All of the attention is naturally focusing on Boris Johnson's victory but we shouldn't forget the Conservatives who were elected to the Greater London Assembly.
First the constituency winners:
- Barnet and Camden, Brian Coleman, Re-elected with 40%
- Bexley and Bromley, James Cleverly, Newly-elected with 52%
- Croydon and Sutton, Stephen O'Connell, Newly-elected with 43%
- Ealing and Hillingdon, Richard Barnes, Re-elected with 42%
- Havering and Redbridge, Roger Evans, Re-elected with 47%
- Merton and Wandsworth, Richard Tracey, Newly-elected with 44%
- South West, Tony Arbour, Re-elected with 40%
- West Central, Kit Malthouse, Newly-elected with 52%
There were then three London-wide members:
- Andrew Boff
- Victoria Borwick
- Gareth Bacon
This looks a good team.
We don't know all of the new members but Kit Malthouse is a successful businessman and writer. Richard Tracey is a former MP and we hope he'll bring some of his experience of 'the Wandsworth revolution' to London-wide government. Richard was the only member to receive more votes within his area than Boris. James Cleverly has a military background but is also a businessman. He's also a terrific communicator and will, we hope, be employed to communicate the Conservative message across the city.
It's good to see Mayoral primary candidates Andrew Boff (pictured) and Victoria Borwick elected. Both suggested good ideas as candidates - Andrew on direct democracy, Victoria on crime. We hope that they'll play full parts in Boris' plan for London.
Victoria's election ensures that there'll still be a woman within the Tory group. That had looked unlikely after Angie Bray had stood down to focus on her General Election campaign in Ealing Central and Acton.
Cllr Bob Blackman will have more time to focus on becoming MP for Harrow East - he lost the Brent and Harrow Assembly seat on Thursday night.
When Tony Blair proposed restoring the London Mayoralty back in 1997/98, William Hague agreed but opposed the idea of having an Assembly, too. We'll be inviting the GLA members to tell us more about their work so we can understand whether the Assembly is really needed. The Adam Smith Institute believes that the Assembly should be scrapped, saving £6.6m, and should be replaced by "a London Leader’s Council (LLC), consisting of the 32 elected council leaders in Greater London".
Final word to James Cleverly (pictured), whose blog will now be even more essential reading. This is how he reflected on his first few hours as a GLA member:
"Boris' signing in speech showed the humour that we have come to expect but he also made the serious point that we need to make good on our election commitments and put political prejudice aside for the good of London. He also made it clear that he wouldn't tolerate and "dogs in the manger". On an unrelated note I noticed that Sir Iain Blair didn't clap at the end of the speech.
Seeing members of the BNP milling around the building put a downer on the day. You can thank proportional representation and the collapse of the Lib Dem for that.
UPDATE: To be fair the almost complete lack of UKIP campaign also was a contributing factor. The main culprit was PR, it is why I am so against it."