Khan’s decisive victory in the Labour mayoral candidacy
16 September 2015, Blog
If you had asked pollsters three months ago about the most likely winner of the Labour mayoral candidacy, they would have probably said Jowell was the frontrunner. With her Olympic legacy and strong experience as a London MP, she looked like the winning candidate. When the chosen candidate was announced on Friday, however, it was Sadiq Khan who triumphed by winning 59% of the vote.
As reported in last the last edition of Capital Letters, Sadiq owes his victory in part to the left wing surge in support for the newly elected leader, Jeremy Corbyn. Jowell’s alignment as a Blairite candidate may have also fuelled his success, as candidates perceived to be linked to New Labour have suffered in both the mayoral and leadership elections.
But it is not fair to say that only outside factors bolstered Khan. His campaign was fought on clear messages on housing and transport and he was able to successfully capitalise on his financial backing from the union. It is now to be seen whether he can carry on this strength to the election next May.