Contact details

contact email address

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Ken's gimmick to appease the Blairites

Labour's candidate for London mayor has made a surprise an announcement that should he win a week today he will make the woman who challenged him for the role of Labour candidate a "young people's champion". Oona King who is a Labour peer will be responsible for:
Restore the London-wide Education Maintenance Allowance 
Re-establish a London Child Poverty Commission 
Create a London Apprenticeship Offer, and piloting a pre-apprentice course.  
Create jobs for young Londoners from the Olympics legacy and across the GLA  
Work with businesses to promote Saturday jobs
Provide safe places for young people who are threatened by gangs and violence

On the BBC this morning Ken Livingstone finally admitted that the mayor does not have the legal powers to bring EMA back which all independent commentators have always said. Ken Livingstone said on March 7th he will bar his team "from having outside jobs". This pledge will be broken if Baroness King is appointed as she is an active Member of the Lords. 

Oona King speaking about her possible appointment said: “We can't let the Tories get away with how they've made things worse for young Londoners. I want to do everything I can to help young Londoners by working with Ken as part of a Labour team that makes Londoners better off. Ken’s Labour initiatives from reintroducing EMA, supporting for Safe Havens, helping girls in gangs, implementing anti-poverty strategies, pre-apprentice pilots, and cutting fares show exactly how much better off Young Londoners will be with Ken as their mayor."

The appointment of Oona King is being seen as nothing more than a gimmick from the Livingstone camp. And is likely to be nothing more than an attempt to appease the Blairites who are in the Labour party and have complained that Mr Livingstone keeps on attacking Mr Blair in the television debates. Mr Blair did say of Ken Livingstone in the first election for mayor in 2000 that Ken Livingstone would be a "disaster" for London. 

Labour's election campaigns manager, Tom Watson MP has said: “For once, I’m being totally candid with you. I’m saying to you, those Labour voters that are thinking of going to vote for Boris Johnson, hold your nose, vote for Ken, because that’s the way that you will help Labour". Releasing his gaffe went on to his blog and tried to claim he hadn't said and it was a Tory smear.