Part-Time Khan: Bad Week for Sadiq

khan

April 2014:

Labour is planning to launch a full-scale assault on Boris Johnson, labelling him a man with two part-time jobs if he stands for a seat in the House of Commons before quitting as Mayor in 2016. Senior party sources say Ed Miliband is backing the attack, which would be spearheaded by shadow London  minister Sadiq Khan.

June 2015:

Sadiq Khan has told members that he will remain as MP for Tooting until 2020 even if he becomes Mayor of London.

Guido hears there is serious local concern that if Khan wins and forces a by-election, then the Tories will take the seat as they almost did in 2010 and 2015. Khan’s platform for Mayor is a seriously reduced majority as more yuppies and dinkies move to his gentrified constituency. Not a great sell.

Tellingly, his own CLP nominated both Khan and his deadly rival for the job Tessa Jowell…

UPDATE:

BoJo: We Must Be Willing to Go

EU REFORM

“Now is the chance to build that coalition for reform. It may not be easy, and it may take a while – beyond 2016, I am sure”, says Boris this morning. After telling the Telegraph he was against an early referendum, the Mayor dodged the question on whether he would resign when asked by Sky earlier:

“You’ve got to be able to walk away. Now the PM is going to be successful in the negotiations but if he doesn’t get the deal he wants he’s got to be open to Britain deciding there can be an alternative future.”

Helpful, when the PM is backtracking on last night’s “over-firm” briefing that “If you want to be part of the Government you have to take the view that we are engaged in an exercise of renegotiation to have a referendum and that will lead to a successful outcome.” Which seems to pre-judge the outcome…

Chuka Boris Flop

Ohhh, punchy.

Oh wait:

So Chuka seems to be saying Boris was meant to have seen his tweet and got to the chamber in exactly 2 minutes?

It’s insight that like that made him think he had a hope in hell of leading the Labour Party…

Zac Evens to be Tory Candidate for Mayor

ZAC

The latest odds from Ladbrokes have Zac Goldsmith favourite to be the Tory candidate for Mayor:

Conservative Mayoral Candidate
Evens Zac Goldsmith
5/1 Nick de Bois
8/1 Syed Kamall
10/1 Lord Coe
10/1 Karren Brady
10/1 Stephen Greenhalgh
10/1 Michael Bloomberg
16/1 Ivan Massow
20/1 Andrew Boff
25/1 Sol Campbell
Justine Greening should be on that list too, but as Guido reported on Sunday, Tories back Zac:

“The rollie-smoking multi-millionaire greeny has a growing following, increasing his majority in Richmond, South West London, from 4,091 to a stonking 23,015 at the election. Green Party peer Baroness Jones is also keen on the idea, saying many Greens “very much like that he comes across as very green and committed and passionate”. Zac has promised to resign his seat and force a by-election if the Government approves expansion of Heathrow Airport this summer, potentially giving him the perfect platform to launch a bid for City Hall. A friend says: “He’ll only do it if he thinks it’s genuinely what his constituents want.”

The race is beginning to rumble behind the scenes…

Boris Honeymoon Over as Hammond Slaps the New MP

If Boris thought he would be welcomed back into the parliamentary fray as a great statesman, he was quickly put in his place during Monday’s Queen’s Speech debate about Britain’s standing in the world:

Boris was quickly on his feet, trying to boost his foreign policy credentials:

“What can we do to prevent the appalling tragedy that might befall the great archaeological site in Palmyra, is there any hope he can offer?”

The Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond began courteously enough in his reply:

“I know my Honourable Friend is extremely concerned about this issue, but he will know that ISIL, for what it’s worth, have given some limited assurances about its intentions in regard to the site.”

But then he gave his potential rival a gentle slap:

“The problem of course is the principal instrument that the coalition has to deploy is air power, and he can well understand the difficulty of deploying air power to protect historical sites – that doesn’t make sense.”

Just as Boris will “well understand” a side swipe when he sees one…

Galloway Makes Good on Threat to Run for Mayor

He warned he would do it if he lost Bradford West, and today it’s confirmed:

Will it turn out to be a “most unwise” move?

BoJo: I am Back

Bow down… but seriously, check out that sexy look from Rees Mogg. Ohhh.

Ivan-o Idea What I Pay My Staff

It all went a bit Natalie Bennett for wannabe Tory mayoral candidate Ivan Massow on LBC this evening:

When asked why he was calling for a London Living Wage yet paying his staff the minimum wage all Ivan could muster was: “oh God”. Yikes.

Boris Tells Unionised Cabbies: “It’s Called the Free Market”

Ever the equal opportunity offender, Boris has evened up his dig at Uber by antagonising black cab drivers. He told a hostile audience of cabbies in the London Assembly public gallery:

“You are dealing with a huge economic force which is consumer choice and the taxi trade needs to recognise that. Everywhere I go I see yellow lights and I can see the taxi trade is dying and it grieves me, but it is very, very difficult to fight a huge change in consumer preference.

[Heckler shouts that cabbies are being undercut.]

Yes they are. It’s called the free market… There’s a rail strike on Tuesday, you might get some fares.”

Yet rather than take advantage of the strike, cabbies are instead planning on spending the day protesting themselves…

Ivan Massow Launch Strikes Sour Note

Some might say mocking up a £100,000 note with your face on it isn’t the best way for a millionaire politician to show he is in touch with the concerns of everyday people. Yet that is what optimistic Tory London mayor hopeful Ivan Massow has done:

Alas, the high production values of his launch video could not entirely compensate for the subject:

Ivan the Terrible…

Young, Bald Leadership Contender Unveils New Blonde Girlfriend

Where have we seen this before?

hague-fion

But is Chuka ready? Like Hague, is he going for it too early? 5 years as opposition leader is a very long time…

As Guido reports in the Sun today, Umunna has plenty of options available, with some allies urging him to run for Mayor of London rather than leader. From City Hall he can build a power-base, gain executive experience and sweep back as leader after the referendum. Or will his vanity and ambition for the top job blind him to the long game?

Marr-vellous Ding Dong: Boris V Miliband

They might be doing it at PMQs every week soon…

Boris: “The Cloud Has Been Lifted From Tower Hamlets”

Boris Johnson has responded to the news that Lufter Rahman is a goner:

“I’m very glad that justice has taken its course and the cloud has been lifted from Tower Hamlets.

It’s vital we move on with new elections.”

No word from Ken Livingstone…

UPDATE: Ken speaks:

“I’d take Eric Pickles to court. This is like something out of East Germany under the communists”

Ivan Massow’s Meeting Mystery

This afternoon Guido reported that Tory mayoral wannabe Ivan Massow turned up in Thanet to campaign for the Tories, only to leave after taking a few photos:

Massow hit back, claiming that he had to be back in London for a super important meeting with Boris:

Six minutes after Ivan claimed to be meeting the Mayor, Boris tweeted evidence to the contrary:

City Hall sources say the Mayor has been out all day…

UPDATE: City Hall now saying Boris posted the tweet later in the day and was in fact back in the office at 4. The point still stands, Massow was only in Thanet for an hour.

Tory Stunt: Mayoral Candidate’s Whistle-Stop Thanet Tour

At 12:20 this afternoon Tory mayoral wannabe Ivan Massow declared that he was on his way to Thanet South to campaign, “to show Thanet that we care”:

At 13:49 Massow posted this photograph of him outside the campaign HQ on the ground:

At 13:59 a co-conspirator reports that Ivan Massow boarded the train back to London.

Although he didn’t manage to Tweet a snap of that.

Looks like he doesn’t care about Thanet, beyond a flying visit for the photo…

UPDATE: Massow responds:

Hmmmm…

Boris Lets Slip That Jo Johnson is Still Writing Tory Manifesto Today

Boris has gone violently off message in a speech in the West Country, calling for the government to: “Bring back hunting to Exmoor, whilst always respecting the feelings and indeed the wishes of the animals.” The Western Morning News reports on the Mayor’s visit to Dulverton Town Hall, where he “intrigued the audience with other pre-election promises such as an NHS for animals, making Scrabble an Olympic sport, and a bid to open Britain’s borders to citizens of “Eurozone disaster areas like Italy”, but only if they agreed to help hill farmers at lambing time”:

Number one – abolish VAT on hearing aids.

Two: apply to the UN for the immediate recognition of the superior intelligence of rats, geese and other animals…”

Best received was a call to “bring back manners in young people” and make them eat crisps with a knife and fork…”

Banter aside and most intriguingly, Boris let slip that the Tory manifesto – due imminently – is still being written:

“Our family does not have good reputation for meeting deadlines. My brother Joseph (MP for Orpington) has had to go to London today after someone rang before breakfast – probably the Prime Minister – reminding him he had to write 4,000 words for the Conservative manifesto.”

Well it can’t be as rubbish as their 2010 one.

While the Mayor’s Away, the Candidates Can Play

Boris deputy and wannabe mayor Stephen Greenhalgh waited until his boss was out of the country to have an extraordinary pop about tube fares. Team BoJo are said to be furious at Greenhalgh’s intervention pledging a cut should he take over, which is about as subtle as a Boston blizzard. Already the Standard are reporting it as a direct challenge, “raising questions over current fares” and noting Greenhalgh’s naked attempt to “seize the initiative… in the battle to succeed Boris”Greenhalgh’s growing list of enemies are already calling him the ‘hands-on mayor‘…

Hillary Clinton Welcomes Boris Home to USA

The next PM and President?

After a shaky start, it seems the Mayor’s East Coast tour is finally beginning to get going: ie he’s getting the pictures he wants. Let’s hope Hillary can forgive what Boris once said of her:

“She’s got dyed blonde hair and pouty lips, and a steely blue stare, like a sadistic nurse in a mental hospital… represents, on the face of it, everything I came into politics to oppose: not just a general desire to raise taxes and nationalize things, but an all-round purse-lipped political correctness.”

He’s got more in common with her husband…

Quote of the Day

Boris on British Jihadis. Apparently based on MI5 intel:

“If you look at all the psychological profiling about bombers, they typically will look at porn. They are literally w***ers. Severe onanists. They are tortured. They will be very badly adjusted in their relations with women, and that is a symptom of their feeling of being failures and that the world is against them. They are not making it with girls, and so they turn to other forms of spiritual comfort — which of course is no comfort.”

Boris Backs Brexit (Possibly)

In every modern Tory leadership election the candidate who has made the most anti-EU noises has won. Ergo, here is Boris’ intervention in this week’s Time magazine:

“I think Brexit is possible … [Britain] would very rapidly come to an alternative arrangement that protected our basic trading interests.

[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +



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Quote of the Day

John Curtice on fiscal policy:

“Attitudes to taxation and spending are basically counter-cyclical. If a government comes in and tries to reduce spending and taxation, after a while people will get worried about the state of public services. If a government increases taxation and public spending, after a while they’ll get concerned about increasing taxation…. In as much as there are lots of ideologues out there who think the state should be this proportion of GDP, they’re all wrong. Because the public’s view is counter-cyclical to the recent experience. It’s basically impossible to satisfy the public.”

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