Monday, April 30, 2012
The Assembly Election - This Thursday
So Who wants a Coalition Mayor?
That question highlights the importance of the Assembly Election on Thursday.
Publicity has focused on the high profile Mayoral contest but along with the pink ballot paper for the Mayor (allowing a first and second choice), voters will also be presented with a yellow ballot paper for the Assembly seat of Havering & Redbridge and an orange ballot paper which is used to elect 11 Assembly Members from party lists by a form of proportional representation.
At every London election we have voters who discard these two papers, or use them for a 'protest vote' because the Assembly is seen as unimportant - but that is far from the case.
The Mayor needs to have his budget approved by the Assembly. This means that if fewer than 9 Conservatives are elected on Thursday he will have to do deals with other parties. With Labour opposing Boris and the Greens acting as an annex of Ken's campaign, this will most likely mean a Conservative / Lib Dem budget - a Coalition Mayor.
In 2004 only 7 Labour Assembly Members were elected and Ken had to do budget deals with the Green Party - deals which made his council tax rises even more expensive.
New legislation makes the Assembly even more important. The Mayor will need to get his key planning policies, his Transport Plan and his Economic Development Plan approved by the Assembly. Again, with fewer than 9 Conservative members he will have to rely on other parties, probably the Lib Dems - more Coalition.
A Labour / Green outright majority whilst unlikely, could deadlock the Mayor's administration, leaving our city to drift for four years.
So I Am Seeking Your Support
If you support Ken you will probably vote Labour too.
If you back Boris then give him the support he requires to implement his policies. That is why you should vote Conservative on Thursday on both the yellow paper - for me - and the orange paper - for our excellent list candidates.