Stephen Greenhalgh says he can retain City Hall for the Conservatives despite Labour emerging from last week’s general election with a majority of London MPs.
Mr Greenhalgh is currently Boris Johnson’s deputy mayor for policing and crime, a role which gives him oversight of the Met, and is the most senior Conservative politician to declare an interest in contesting next year’s Mayoral election.
He has already promised to lower fares if elected and to reserve new homes built with City Hall cash and support for long-term Londoners.
Although Greenhalgh has acknowledged that the Conservatives face a “real challenge” in keeping the Mayoralty because of Labour’s traditional strength in London, he says Mr Johnson’s 2008 victory when the party had fewer MPs than now proves it can be done.
Tonight Mr Greenhalgh will convene a roundtable event at HMS Belfast where he’ll seek to convince Conservative London MPs, council leaders, Assembly Members that a third Tory term at City Hall is possible.
Ahead of the meeting, Mr Greenhalgh said: “I am under no illusions that winning London next year will be a real challenge but we have proved before that we can win in London, London is winnable again next year – and my record is one of winning here, often against the odds, and of delivering better public services that cost Londoners less.”
He added: “The Mayoralty sits at the apex of London government with a clear mission to serve the 8.6 million Londoners who live in the greatest global city on earth.
“The job of London Mayor is neither a sunset gig at the end of political career spent as a Westminster MP nor a soapbox for a celebrity.”