Insights from the UK and beyond
(Updated on May 3 with new headline, election results, reaction and photos)
The man described by some as a joke, by others as a brilliant mind has ended Ken Livingstone’s eight-year reign at City Hall.
The verdict is still out on what exactly Boris Johnson’s victory means for the Conservative Party overall but his performance as mayor could help determine whether people will vote for the Tories in a general election next time.
Johnson, whose experience of running big projects is limited, will lead one of the world’s most high-profile cities with an 11.3 billion pound budget to run public transport, police and fire services and promote the economy of this global financial centre.
The Labour Party may be hoping that the gaffe-prone “blond bombshell” will prove incapable of doing the job and thus damage the Conservatives chances of winning the next election. Johnson will have to get cracking soon with strong policies to bolster his image and become the ambassador that the Tories need him to be as the capital’s mayor.
Last week in an interview with Reuters Ken Livingstone dismissed his rival Boris Johnson’s 12 point lead in the race for London Mayor in a YouGov poll as a quirk, resulting from its method of surveying voters over the internet.
He said a Guardian ICM poll using more traditional methods — telephoning a sample of voters — would show him in a much better position.
He dismisses a recent YouGov poll that shows him trailing Conservative rival Boris Johnson and says his rival candidates are all “Ken Lites” who have moved their policies closer to his.
*For all the latest Reuters news, analysis, pictures and blogs from the campaign trail, visit our special London elections site*
The mayoral candidates have set out their plans for London.
Crime, affordable housing and public transport are discussed at length in their manifestos.