Labour’s Sadiq Khan can’t be trusted to deliver for Londoners – but Zac is a man I can do business with
When I first became chancellor six years ago, I inherited a British economy and a London economy that were on their knees. It’s why on day one we immediately put a plan in place to rescue the public finances while laying the foundations for recovery.
London led that recovery, bouncing back first and fastest. With one in every five pounds earned here spent elsewhere in the UK, the capital’s early fightback helped protect jobs right across the country.
But throughout that time, I knew I could work with a Conservative mayor in City Hall and together we could get the best deal for London.
Boris and I have worked together to deliver big investment in the capital’s infrastructure, attract business and rebuild financial services, strengthen its world class arts sector and devolve more power out of Whitehall.
Had Ken Livingstone – a leading advocate of unlimited borrowing – still been in post, it would have been a very different relationship. The trust would not have been there.
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So when Londoners choose their next mayor tomorrow this should be a major consideration. Do you want a mayor who can work with this government to get the best possible deal for London, or a mayor who’ll spend the next four years fighting the government? Do you want four years of angry demonstrations or a deal on Crossrail 2?
I want a mayor who wants to work with me to get things done, which is why I’m backing Zac Goldsmith for mayor.
I’ve known Zac for a long time. No-one could accuse him of slavishly toeing the party line, but I know he’s a man I can do business with.
Zac will fight for London. He fought tooth and nail to protect police funding, which is exactly what we did in my last Budget. By contrast, Sadiq Khan didn’t pick up the phone once to me to make the case for the Met. You cannot deliver for London if you’re not prepared to talk to the Conservative government.
I’m committed to further devolution. Just as I’m a tax-cutting chancellor, I want to see London keeping more of the money it earns. But that requires trust.
When the man who voted down every cut to corporation tax I’ve ever put forward says he’ll be pro-business, I take it with a pinch of salt. When Khan says he’ll find savings at TfL, I know he spent the last six years voting for higher spending.
Read more: Corbyn-backing Sadiq Khan would be a disaster for London’s economy
I’ve seen his manifesto, and I know he’s proposing to blow a £1.9bn black hole in TfL’s finances. This will mean either scrapping vital investment on our tube and buses, or hitting Londoners with higher council tax. That’s just not an agenda I’m prepared to sign up to.
Above all, I do not want to hand over one of the world’s most dynamic urban economies – £600bn worth of jobs and businesses – to a Labour Party that has learned nothing from the financial calamity it oversaw.
So tomorrow I urge Londoners to choose Zac’s Action Plan for Greater London, so I can work with Zac to keep our economy strong.
Government and mayor have got to pull together so we can build the homes that London needs, create the jobs Londoners want, invest in transport Londoners use, and back our police to keep London safe.
Zac has a fully-funded plan to do just that. If delivered, it will secure half a million new jobs. It’s the right plan for London and I’m proud to give it my backing.