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Secondary Teacher

Have you fallen down a rabbit hole - dream on.

Daniel Vince-Archer

Isn't Lee Rotherham standing on an 'abolish the mayoralty' ticket? If so, surely he wouldn't be in a position to send such a letter?

That's my token pedantry done with for today...

Jim Baxter

How can we expect voters to take us seriously if we can't take the job of the Mayor seriously? This joke candidate is an embarrassment.

Deputy Editor

He would at first, DVA - see the penultimate sentence...

And finally, please, pass the legislation that puts me and this costly London quasi-government out of a job.

Andrew Ian Dodge

There is nothing wrong with being an abolitionist candidate. Fortunately with Lee you can expect him to do what he set out to do and get rid of that complete waste of money that is the mayor's office.

Good to see people attacking the person and not the ideas. I thought that was passe' in the new Conservative Party.

Jonathan M Scott

Andrew, I agree entirely with your post.

Reading Lee's post, I think he will make a superb London Mayor - if selected - and he has got the right idea by promoting the 'broken windows' theory of policing which has as he says worked so well in New York and other American cities.

London needs to be cleaned up and Mr Rotherham would be the idea candidate to do so, because Red Ken ain't got a hope of cleaning anything up !

Dawb Cole

When is the party going to grow up? Not even after nine years in opposition? No wonder it's been this long.

The Mayor's post is going away. The Conservative Party is not going to make itself look foolish and irrelevant by allowing an "abolitionist" candidate to go forward. Perhaps we should have a political intellegence test for members.

Andrew Ian Dodge

The Mayor's post is going away.

Exactly that is why he is running to make sure it goes away.


Or do you mean a "people who agree with me" test, Dawb?

Martin Hoscik (MayorWatch)

Well speaking as someone who supports London government I hope Rotherham is picked.

The last GLA elections saw an increase in the number of voters on the 2000 turnout and both saw a marked increase on the number who voted in the 1998 Referendum.

Yet despite these increases there persists a belief that a majority are opposed to the continuance of the GLA. As an outsider many of those Conservatives opposed to the role of Mayor seem only to be so because they feel Livingstone can't be beaten by any of the likely runners.

So let's hope Rotherham is selected, this way a clear decision can be made by Londoners and if Rotherham's not elected the abolitionists will need to accept they're in a minority.

Hopefully they'll then devote themselves to running a candidate in 2012 who supports the institution.

london tory

This shouldn't become a forum for losers.

It only takes the tiniest bit of campaign savvy to understand that we cannot have a candidate opposed to the Mayoralty. As Martin correctly points out, the Mayor, the Labour Party and Liberal Democrats would be the main beneficiaries. Remember the polls even at the time of abolition of the GLC--if anything a less effective institution than the Mayoralty.

Nor should we want someone with such views. It's our job to elect someone who can achieve modern conservative goals in the office to reduce crime, improve transport etc. Reading some of these posts and others really makes one wonder about just the sheer stupidity of so many of our members.

John G

It only takes the tiniest bit of campaign savvy to understand that we cannot have a candidate opposed to the Mayoralty

Why not? Personally I always thought the whole concept was utter nonsense, and that creepy Marxist lunatic Livingstone has proved my point many times over.

IMHO one of the best things Maggie did was to get rid of the GLC. If it were down to me I'd get rid of this bunch of self-serving placemen as well.

The London boroughs are perfectly capable of providing all the government London needs.


"It only takes the tiniest bit of campaign savvy to understand that we cannot have a candidate opposed to the Mayoralty."

Assertion isn't argument, LondonTory

We don't need to stand on a straightforward abolitionist ticket but offer Londoners another referendum. In the meantime, our Mayor would offer cheaper, more efficient services etc.etc. Most public services are subject to audit review these days and a new office like the Mayor should be subject to a democratic review to see whether it has lived up to its initial purpose or whether a fourfold increase in cost means its an expensive waste of money. London is the Capital why should just Londoners pay for diplomatic protection, security at capital events etc. Why shouldn't commuters pay for London's transport system as they use it every bit as much as Londoners. And if they pay, they should have a vote on the Mayor. So why not extend the Mayor, if we are keeping him, out to the Home Counties (and make him permanently Tory.)

Some people see an election and all they can think of is putting up a candidate and playing the game. Its so high school.

Martin Hoscik (MayorWatch)


I'm not sure I understand your position. How do you think abolishing the office of Mayor would address the situation where "just Londoners pay for diplomatic protection, security at capital events etc" ?

I agree that that situation is wrong - http://www.mayorwatch.org.uk/news.php?article_id=311 - but it's wholly unconnected with the office of Mayor as it's a central Government issue.

I'd be interested why you think the situation is more likely to change without a Londonwide voice when all governments of all political persuasions have perpetuated the existing situation.

As for offering Londoners another referendum you need to win power at a GE to deliver this. Why stand at the Mayoral election on a policy you can't deliver?

If we're to accept your view that "a new office like the Mayor should be subject to a democratic review to see whether it has lived up to its initial purpose" and a resulting referendum delivered a majority to abolish the GLA would you be undertaking to offer Londoners another referendum in 10 years time in case they felt having no Londonwide voice wasn't serving their interests?

As for "Why shouldn't commuters pay for London's transport system" surely commuters do pay - in their fares? It's unclear what you're proposing - is it that paying a Tube fair entitles you to vote for the Mayor even if you don't live in London?

What if you live further away than "the Home Counties" - would your fare still entitle you to a vote? Would you have to do a minimum number of journeys in London to qualify for a vote?

Or are you saying that they should pay in their taxes and this should qualify them to vote? If so as Londoners subsidise just about every other region of the UK should we all get to vote in every out of London election?

Either way it does seem a complicated proposal!


Martin I will try and take your points in turn

Londoners pay for diplomatic protection through the Met Police and therefore through the mayoral precept. A decent Mayor would attack the Govt on behalf of Londoners to remedy the injustice. The police are one of only two real powers the Mayor has got.

I do not expect the situation to change period. That doesn't forbid me from raising it as an issue and as a means to attack the govt and the office of Mayor of which I disapprove

You are far too simplistic. The mayor would be elected on a platform of requiring a referendum from the government. This is called consulting the people and popular. Either the govt grants it in which case we have a referendum (at least its been a fresh and distinctive issue at the mayoral election) or it doesn't in which case we have endless fun spluttering about the injustice. This cannot be an issue at a GE (it would get swallowed in the larger noise) but the government's arrogant refusal to grant one could be.

A repeat referendum would be a matter for 2016 and the democratic demands of the London people at that time a.k.a. who cares?

As for transport I do not understand you. A goodly portion of the Mayor's precept is spent on transport - only Londoners pay this. Everyone pays fares. I am suggesting that this tax burden should be spread out to the home counties where extra numbers would lessen it considerably but that as a quid pro quo the home counties should have a vote on the mayor's transport policies (at his election). By an unrelated but happy coincidence increasing the electorate for the Mayor would turn him from a safe Labour post to a safe Conservative one.

Of course it would be possible to say that Scots occasionally use London Transport as do the citizens of Paris and New York but I think that argument is just silly and unworthy. Commuters in the Home Counties, certainly the near Home counties, use LRT a lot and have a right to be consulted about London's transport policy if we retain the office of Mayor, which I repeat I am against.

Martin Hoscik (MayorWatch)


I'll try and respond more fully later but for now:

Genuine question, can you name me a member of the Tory home affairs team who have advocated removing national police duties from the Met? Note, I'm not scoring points, I have no idea who has or hasn't suggested it and as I'm in favour of such a change would be interested to know.

I don't buy into your reasons for extending voting for the London Mayor to non-Londoners and I also disagree that it's a safe Labour job.

It's probably safe Livingstone job but I think post Ken it'll be a tighter race IMO.



No one in CCHQ has suggested anything of the sort. When Letwin proposed elected Police authorities in 2004 I asked him at a meeting to split off the national policing function from the Met to enable splitting the Met into smaller more manageable units doing ordinary Police work so that they could have local democratic control too. I got a lot of spluttering which meant no.


Londoners do pay an MPA precept but this is not used to fund diplomatic protection Jonathan. The Home Office pay a central grant known as the "Special Payment" to cover the cost of protecting politicians and key designated sites around the Capital.

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