Many of the critics who slammed Ken Livingstone’s decision to mount a legal challenge against the Tube PPP are now ministers hoping he’ll secure their party a much needed victory in May’s elections.
Many Londoners who supported Ken Livingstone in 2000 after Labour’s desperate and naked fixing of their selection process found it hard not to enjoy Tony Blair almost begging him to return to the party in time for the 2004 elections.
Who could ever forget Blair’s announcement that he’d been wrong to predict a Livingstone Mayoralty would be a disaster for London? Even many of those who oppose Ken enjoyed the moment.
So can we now look forward to the current Chancellor, who called the PPP deal “good news for Londoners”, campaigning for Livingstone’s re-election or will Alistair Darling develop a sense of shyness now that the “good news” has translated into a £2bn public bailout of the private sector?
The majority of Mayoral candidates in 2000’s elections opposed the PPP scheme. Despite their own candidate struggling not to come fourth behind the LibDem’s unknown Susan Kramer, Labour Ministers somehow felt they had a mandate to push this poor value, badly thought out, ill conceived scheme on Londoners.
Will Darling, Brown and Byers now have the decency to follow their former leader’s example and admit their mistake and apologise to Londoners for four wasted years of delays and cost overruns as a direct result of their dogma driven love affair with the private sector?