Opinion: Boris Johnson wins London mayoral election but victory is hollow

16:47 06 May 2012

Boris Johnson won the London mayoral election but did he really win over London? Picture by Nigel Sutton

Boris Johnson won the London mayoral election but did he really win over London? Picture by Nigel Sutton

© Nigel Sutton email pictures@nigelsuttonphotography.com

So London has a new Mayor. Or rather it has the same Mayor after Boris Johnson unsurprisingly won a second term at City Hall.

The election proved to be a largely underwhelming affair, and personally I’m glad it’s finally all over.

The campaigns by the two leading candidates were long and tedious as well as generally uninspiring and excessively negative.

Each seemed more concerned with bashing the other than actually putting forward many positive policies to shape the future of the capital.

The final result of the election was similarly mundane, with most people predicting a Boris win long before polling day.

Even the delay to the result announcement which dragged things out until the early hours of Saturday failed to add any proper tension.

Really, the only momentous events were Ken Livingstone declaring it to be his political swan song and the Green Party’s Jenny Jones finishing in third place.

The eventual scale of Boris Johnson’s victory typified the whole election.

While the Mayor himself and Prime Minister David Cameron may revel in the Conservative Party’s success in the City Hall race, it can hardly be described as a convincing outcome - at least not accurately.

Firstly, turnout was a dismal 38 per cent, which means nearly two thirds of eligible Londoners couldn’t even be bothered to vote. Boris along with the other candidates failed miserably, it seems, to arouse much – if any – interest in the election among Londoners.

Of this small percentage who turned out, more than half of them chose someone other than Boris as their first preference for Mayor.

This is not exactly a strong platform of support to build on for the next four years.

It seems to be as much a case of the other candidates and parties losing the election as Boris winning it with any commanding style.

Let’s be pleased the election is done and let’s salute Boris Johnson’s victory but let’s keep things in perspective and not get carried away.

Finally, let’s watch with interest whether the Mayor fulfils his promises to Londoners and goes on to justify the trust that at least some of the capital’s residents have put in him by giving him that second term.

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
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest London politics news

Wednesday, August 26, 2015
The eponymous craft beer is not always brewed in the capital (Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

If there’s two things London foodies are obsessed with, it’s craft beer and local products, so it’s a surprise to learn that a drink that is named after London and boasts of being “the quintessential English lager” is sometimes brewed in Europe.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015
How should the next generation of Boris bikes look? (Photo by Steve Bardens/ Getty Images for Santander)

Santander Boris bikes as we know them could be a thing of the past after TfL issued a tender for their redesign.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015
New Fathers 4 Justice campaigners altered this local council anti- domestic violence poster in Greenwich Station (Picture: New Fathers 4 Justice)

An anti-domestic violence poster has angered fathers campaign groups and today two activists were ‘removed’ by police from a south-east London train station for defacing the council missive.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015
Paddy Power reckon it's a dead cert for Labour leadership candidate Jeremy Corbyn (Lauren Hurley/PA Wire)

Jeremy Corbyn’s victory in the Labour leadership race is a “done deal” according to one bookmaker which has already started paying out on bets.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015
Computer class

New figures show, in the face of growing youth unemployment, vacancies for digital jobs is set to widen in the next year.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015
Lord Sewel resigns from the House of Lords (Picture: PA Images)

Lord Sewel has quit the House of Lords after video footage emerged of him allegedly taking cocaine with two prostitutes in his London flat, even snorting a line off one woman’s breasts.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

Shop till you drop!

Home to top name brands at great prices, TK Maxx is more like a treasure hunt than a shop. Perfect for grabbing a bargain or some hidden gems, you arm yourself with a trolley and go wild.

Read more
Scones, jam and a cup of Earl Grey anyone?

Luxury boutique hotel Flemings Mayfair has recently launched The Drawing Room, London’s most stylish location for afternoon tea.

Read more
Free weekly shop? Yes please!

Win £200 to spend at Asda, one of the country’s leading supermarkets. Asda prides itself in being one of the cheapest places to shop, so you can be sure that your money will go a long way here.

Read more