The human dynamos who run the Liberal Democrat party today finally got round to naming their candidates for selection to be the fourth-placed finisher in next May’s London Mayoral election – a mere six weeks after their original choice announced she didn’t fancy the task any longer.
Yet it will be another four weeks before they make up their minds whether it will be Luisa Porritt or Geeta Sidhu-Robb’s name that goes on the ballot paper for elections where most believe Labour’s Sadiq Khan will be returned comfortably.
The LibDems have just taken nine months to choose Kingston MP “Sir” Ed Davey as their party leader – from a vast choice of 11 MPs.
It was July when Siobhan Benita withdrew as the LibDem candidate for London Mayor, saying that the extension of the campaign because of coronavirus was too much of a burden.
So now the Liberal Democrats have managed to come up with a couple of replacement contenders who even fewer Londoners will have heard of.
Porritt is the leader of the LibDems on Camden Council who spent the final six months of last year serving as a Member of the European Parliament.
Sidhu-Robb won Business Women of the Year awards in 2010, 2011 and 2014, and is the founder of health and wellbeing company Nosh Detox, and former vice-chair of the People’s Vote Campaign.
Today, Sidhu-Robb said, “I’m ready to champion those core values of fighting poverty, standing up to discrimination and empowering local communities to build a fairer society.”
From the quotes attributed to the wannabe candidates by the London LibDems, it appears Porritt has little knowledge of sarf of the river, where her party colleagues control the incinerating and polluting borough of Sutton. “Sadiq Khan has let down Londoners who needed him to help them get on the housing ladder, detoxify our polluted air and make our young people feel safe,” Porritt said, apparently in all seriousness.
She also had a pop at blundering Shaun Bailey, the Conservative candidate who few of London’s Tories trust. “Londoners won’t waste votes on a Tory candidate fighting threats to oust him,” Porritt said.
The disarray around the LibDem candidate and feebleness of the Tory campaign has many observers predicting that Sian Berry, the Green Party candidate for Mayor, is likely to finish runner-up to Khan, if the covid-delayed elections still go ahead next May.
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