The Million Vote Mandate

Localis and Policy Exchange yesterday launched their Million Vote Mandate report, looking at the big issues which the Mayor is going to face in his first term.

Split into seven sections, the document covers the Mayor’s style, the reformation of Local Government, CrossRail, the Olympics, Crime, Lessons from NY and the Environment.

The launch of the document at the Ideas Space in Westminster followed short speeches by Ian Clement (the Mayor’s new Deputy Mayor for Government Relations), Prof Tony Travers and journalist Andrew Gilligan.

Reform of the institutions of governance in London were a cornerstone of the debate yesterday, the text of the Million Vote Mandate only enforcing this aspiration.

“Accusations of cronysim in the latter days of Ken Livingstone’s period in office could have been avoided if there had been more effective mechanisms to ensure oversight of the Mayor’s expenditure.” – Prof. Tony Travers

Ian Clement in particular was revealing when discussing the institutions of London. In short order he backed CrossRail, dialled down the 2012 fervour to “let’s be honest and realistic” levels, and spoke of institutional reform of the LDA.

What emerged from the speeches and Q&A session that followed however, was a vision of an administration with small but important aspirations, aspirations which if fulfilled would greatly impact on Londoners’ interactions with their city.

“The aim should be to unlock communities; to empower the downtrodden, not control them”. – Andrew Gilligan

Rather than leaving the police to deal with crime unaided by the administration, for example, bus conductors and community wardens herald the beginning of a “non coercive” revolution, empowering Londoners reclaim the city for themselves.

The Million Vote Mandate is certainly worth reading, especially for those of you who took an interest in the Alternative Manifesto which we published in April. The questions raised in it are great, and we look forward to seeing how the Mayor’s office responds to the challenges it sets.

Go to the article here