The Thick of It

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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The problem with personality: Ken V Boris


The ongoing spat between relatively wealthy Ken and very wealthy Boris about who has paid tax properly is distracting us all from what each man is proposing to do to our city. That suits a Boris frightened by Ken's low fares policy. This has resonated with voters and brought his old rival back into contention. Boris' manifesto lacks substance and ambition, his vision for London is underwhelming, yet he was very forthright in campaigning for a cut to the top rate of income tax, which will benefit him by many £1000s annually.

Ken needs to focus on policy to win, Boris on personality and negativity. Ken has become an easy having collected an army of both fans and enemies over several decades at the top of London politics.

London is generally a Labour city, yet polling suggests that Ken is under-performing Labour's London lead. Again, this is down to personality. People like his policies even when they don't like him. Ken could once lay claim to having one of the biggest personalities in politics, yet he is up against an even bigger one in Boris. That isn’t necessarily Ken’s fault, but he needs to fight harder to seize the political agenda back if he is to win.

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