It’s clear that Ken Livingstone remains the favourite for the Labour Party’s mayoral nomination. But there are signs that market sentiment is moving away from him.
The influential Political Betting website echoes one of my concerns – that Ken has simply failed to move on from his 2008 defeat. Today’s Guardian article by Jonathan Freedland – doubting both Ken and Oona, and calling on Labour to re-open nominations – is especially interesting, given the paper’s hysterical support for Livingstone in 2008, and the touching, continued fealty of some of its lower-level operatives. As Freedland notes, “you don’t have to be ill-disposed to either candidate to worry about their chances of defeating the current mayor.”
Ken’s groupies normally dismiss all those, such as myself, with doubts about the great man as evil, fork-tailed spawn of the Tory lie machine. It’ll be hard to do that with these two: Freedland, in particular, will be read by a lot of the potential voters in this contest.