Ken Livingstone rules out House of Lords peerage after London mayoral election defeat

10:44 08 May 2012


Labour's London mayoral candidate Ken Livingstone (left) and Labour leader Ed Miliband. Photo: Ian Nicholson/PA Wire

Labour’s defeated London mayoral candidate Ken Livingstone has ruled out a return to high-profile politics in the House of Lords.

Mr Livingstone lost last week’s race for City Hall to Tory incumbent Boris Johnson.

After the defeat he said it would be his last election.

Asked whether he would accept a peerage, the former Mayor of London told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme: “Oh God, no, spare me that. I’ve been punished enough.”

Mr Livingstone claimed Labour leader Ed Miliband could be the next Prime Minister and “transform Britain in a way that we haven’t seen for a very long time”.

He said that, for the last 30 years, Britain had taken a “wrong turning”, adding Mr Miliband was now “getting the economic strategy right”.

Mr Livingstone said the current government had “got away” with claims that the last Labour administration had saddled the country with debt.

He said: “For 30 years, Britain has taken a wrong turning. Inequality of wealth has doubled. We were told if we deregulated, if we liberated the banks, the whole economy would rise and there would be a trickle-down effect.

“Sadly, Tony Blair bought into that, New Labour bought into that. I think we are at a turning point in politics now. We have to make something that somebody wants to buy, we won’t just be able to rip off a bit of commission on all the financial transactions.

“I think a lot of the disillusion amongst working-class people, whatever their colour, is that the last Labour government didn’t create good jobs for working-class people.”

Mr Livingstone added: “If I have one criticism of Ed Miliband - and as well as being a friend, I think he is genuinely a Labour leader who will transform Britain in a way that we haven’t seen for a very long time - (it) is that I think he is far too concerned about carrying the discredited old Blairite wing with him.”

Related articles

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
2 3 4 5 6

Latest London politics news

Monday, October 12, 2015
Should cannabis be legalised in the UK? MPs debate the issue today (Picture: PA Images)

As MPs sit to debate whether or not cannabis should be legalised in the UK, we will bring you Twitter reactions, coverage of the pro-cannabis protest at Westminster and some of the key points on both sides of the argument. Ready or not, here we(ed) come!

Thursday, October 8, 2015
Queen Elizabeth II on a tour of the City and Islington College in 2012.

Jeremy Corbyn has declined an invitation to be sworn in to the Privy Council amid continued uncertainty over whether he will declare allegiance in person to the Queen.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015
Oxford Street has been called the most polluted street in Britain (Photo: Matthew Lloyd/Getty Images)

Five major candidates for Mayor of London, including Sadiq Khan, Zac Goldsmith and Sian Berry, have said they would close Oxford Street to traffic.

Monday, October 5, 2015
Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn delivers his first keynote speech on day three of the Labour Party annual conference. Photo: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

Jeremy Corbyn is due to speak at a protest against postal cuts in Manchester today, as his rival party meets in the city for its conference.

Monday, October 5, 2015
Police ushered the Mayor into the conference as protesters heckled and jeered (Photo: Mark McGowan/YouTube)

Mayor of London Boris Johnson was pelted with plastic balls as he arrived at the Conservative Party conference in Manchester today.

Friday, October 2, 2015
Zac Goldsmith will face Sadiq Khan in the battle for London in May 2016 (Picture: PA Images)

Environmentalist Richmond Park MP and Tory girls’ dreamboy Zac Goldsmith has been picked as the Conservative Party’s candidate for London Mayor, winning the contest with 70% of the vote. Here London24 brings you some of the funniest Twitter reactions to his selection.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Line-Up Events


Amazon: Everything you want to buy all in one place!

With £1,500 to spend online at Amazon, there’s really nothing you can’t buy.

Read more
You'll be stocked up on toiletries  for a while!

Cosmetics, toiletries, vitamins and more.

Read more

Latest Tech News