LABOUR’s Ken Livingstone shed a tear yesterday at the launch of his full manifesto to be Mayor of London, later describing how the “awesome responsibility” of ensuring that he wins on 3 May was affecting him.
Livingstone became visibly emotional while watching an election broadcast of his supporters declaring “Come on Ken, London needs you!”
Party leader Ed Miliband briefly placed his hand on the mayoral candidate’s back to comfort him.
“For so many Londoners this election makes a huge difference to their ability to put a hot meal on the table for their kids,” Livingstone explained.
The manifesto, launched at Ravensbourne College in Greenwich, repeated his headline pledge to introduce an immediate seven per cent cut to the cost of public transport while also fleshing out new ideas, such as the proposal to cut costs in the private rental market by establishing a lettings agency backed by City Hall.
Livingstone said he hoped the final three weeks of the campaign would “focus on the issues and not the trivia” as he attempts to move on from concerns over his tax arrangements and align his campaign with popular Labour policies at a national level.
Miliband said Ken had “fought his way back into the race”, telling City A.M.: “There’s still a question as to whether this is a celebrity post or one where you can actually make a difference to people’s living standards.
“Boris Johnson has used the post as a celebrity post. The task of Ken Livingstone and his campaign in the next few weeks is to show to Londoners that this could make a difference to their lives.”