Ken pulls ahead of “increasingly out of touch” Boris

Ken Livingstone is neck-and-neck with Boris Johnson in the London Mayoral election, the latest poll has revealed, with the contest too close to call.


Ken Livingstone has turned round an eight-point lead in the last seven months to lead Boris Johnson by two points in the latest YouGov London Mayor poll (pdf). Taking account of sampling error, the race, which had been Johnson’s to lose, is now “too close to call”, according to YouGov president Peter Kellner.

Last June, Boris led 54%-46%; now, Ken leads 51%-49%.

Kellner writes:

“Our poll suggests two factors have been at work: one has dented Boris’s appeal, while the other has burnished Ken’s.

Boris’s new year problem is that he is seen as increasingly out of touch. As in our poll last June, we listed eight characteristics and asked people to say which applied to the two candidates. As a rule of thumb, with this kind of question – where we ask people to pick from a list rather than judge each characteristic separately – anything over 30 is a good score, and anything under 15 a bad score.

“The proportion saying Boris is ‘in touch with the concerns of ordinary people’ has tumbled since June from 20% to 13%. A bearable score has become a terrible one. Meanwhile Ken, who was already ahead with 37%, has seen his ‘in touch’ score climb to 40%. He was in front; he is now out of sight.”

Adding of Livingstone:

“As for Ken, it looks as his promise to cut fares on buses and the tube has made an impact. Among all Londoners, transport vies with crime as their top concern. But among Ken’s supporters, transport is clearly ahead.”

Encouraging news, then, for Team Ken, but there’s still plenty to do; as Dave Hill, of the Guardian’s “London Blog”, says:

“One poll, of course, is precisely that – just one poll. The Livingstone camp is stressing that it is far from complacent.

“A couple of points caught my eye in the detail. One is that Ken’s honesty rating remains lower than Boris’s: 18% compared with 24%. The other is that Ken scored much higher than Boris when the sample was asked which had achieved more as mayor: 40% thought Ken had done better compared with 30% for Boris.

“The highest profile achievements of Boris’s term – such as his cycle hire scheme and his new bus – have been of little benefit to most Londoners, so there isn’t all that much for him boast about. It’s been noticeable that Ken-hating media friends of the Tory mayor barely mention Boris’s record, preferring to denigrate the personality of his Labour rival.

“The findings of the new poll don’t seem to give the anti-Ken campaign in its various forms any reason to divert from a path of relentless negativity. That said, has that approach really helped Boris so far?”

Exactly fifteen weeks today London goes to the polls, with the race blown open and all to play for.

See also:

Boris, the bankers’ mayor, backs his chums over small businessesJenny Jones AM, January 17th 2012

Boris’s retreat from accountability over the Met should worry us allJoanne McCartney AM, January 16th 2012

Biggs: ‘Boris Tunnel’ is four years late and “doesn’t appear to have any funding”Shamik Das, January 12th 2012

Boris’s electric vehicle boasts are an inverted pyramid of piffleDarren Johnson AM, January 10th 2012

Livingstone pledges London Living Rent, saying Boris has “completely failed” on housingShamik Das, December 13th 2011

As you’re here, we have something to ask you. What we do here to deliver real news is more important than ever. But there’s a problem: we need readers like you to chip in to help us survive. We deliver progressive, independent media, that challenges the right’s hateful rhetoric. Together we can find the stories that get lost.

We’re not bankrolled by billionaire donors, but rely on readers chipping in whatever they can afford to protect our independence. What we do isn’t free, and we run on a shoestring. Can you help by chipping in as little as £1 a week to help us survive? Whatever you can donate, we’re so grateful - and we will ensure your money goes as far as possible to deliver hard-hitting news.

22 Responses to “Ken pulls ahead of “increasingly out of touch” Boris”

  1. Tom White

    @PatrickJEdwards @MirandaButler3

  2. Tony Gee

    @allanrobbins about time >> RT @leftfootfwd Ken pulls ahead of “increasingly out of touch” Boris: @Ken4London

  3. Selohesra

    Rogue poll – my money is still on Boris

  4. Keith

    I only hope that Ken wins as from his past performance he certainly was on the side of the ordinary person and not merely there to line the pockets of the financial world and ex public school boys that Boris aligns himself with.

  5. Mabel

    Ken pulls ahead of “increasingly out of touch” Boris: reports @ShamikDas @Ken4London

  6. Snufflet

    Cameron and Boris the two school chums entrenched in banking sector What do you expect to see?
    They are angling for plum bonus rich positions with Barclays and Bank of America when they are yesterdays news after the next elections. The banks have caused all this almighty depression and are still hell bent on ordinary people as you put it losing all of their wealth (Government perceived) . When the new Government comes to power it is my forlorn hope that unlike Obama and Paulson there will be a witch hunt and those responsible will be held at Her Majesty’s Pleasure but No probably they will become Lords and continue the self destruction of our once respected honoured and beautiful Realm

  7. Snufflet

    Take look at him he is a close school chum of our least liked prime minister David Spammeron. He gets it wrong just like David he is never around when situations dictate his presence is required (not wanted and not needed of course) On holiday during the New Years celebrations perhaps he’s afraid the fireworks might have given him a much deserved gift up the Kyber. But wishful thinking aside Ken lowers costs and popularises public transport get rid of cars and lorries in London reduces pollution a thoroughly good man. A COMPLETE NO BRAINER Welcome Ken do your WORST.

  8. Snufflet

    Lucky you so pleased you have some money. But I think you may haver more if Boris Badenough gets a clear get out of here result.

  9. 15 weeks today Londoners can do us all a favour and get rid of the incompetent mayor of London – #SackBoris #YesWeKen

  10. Liza Harding

    Ken pulls ahead of “increasingly out of touch” Boris: reports @ShamikDas @Ken4London

  11. Charles

    The only other possibility is that people are being duped by the pickpocket campaign.

  12. kathy279

    Ken pulls ahead of “increasingly out of touch” Boris: reports @ShamikDas @Ken4London

  13. Simon Watkins

    Ken pulls ahead of “increasingly out of touch” Boris: reports @ShamikDas @Ken4London

  14. Rory Weal

    Ken pulls ahead of “increasingly out of touch” Boris | @ShamikDas on @LeftFootfwd

  15. Jane

    Ken pulls ahead of “increasingly out of touch” Boris | @ShamikDas on @LeftFootfwd

  16. Ewan Aitken

    Ken pulls ahead of “increasingly out of touch” Boris | @ShamikDas on @LeftFootfwd

  17. Michael

    Ken Livingstone pulls ahead of “increasingly out of touch” Boris I Left Foot Forward –

  18. dave m

    Ken Livingstone pulls ahead of “increasingly out of touch” Boris I Left Foot Forward –

  19. Marjory Smith

    Ken Livingstone pulls ahead of “increasingly out of touch” Boris I Left Foot Forward –

  20. Look Left – The human cost of the government’s inhumane welfare reforms | Left Foot Forward

    […] trailing Ken Livingstone 51%-49%, his eight-point lead last June evaporating, with Peter Kellner noting that Johnson is now seen as “increasingly out of […]

  21. Ed's Talking Balls

    Least liked Prime Minister? Erm, what?? The most unpopular Prime Minister in our history lost the last election and is now doing goodness knows what (apart from representing his constituents, of course).

  22. Ken vows to “ease the squeeze”, saying Boris has “betrayed” Londoners | Left Foot Forward

    […] Ken pulls ahead of “increasingly out of touch” Boris 19 Jan […]

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.