This evening I took the unusual step of emailing my campaign’s supporters today to tell them what Boris Johnson’s campaign director has been telling the Tory candidate’s own backers.
In fact I went one step further and forwarded the Tory email to our supporters’ list because I am convinced that the arguments of the Conservatives are a powerful motivating asset for our own activists. The email shows just how single-minded conservatives are in the determination to keep on raising Londoners’ fares, and why we are one hundred per cent right to cut the fares.
In an email to Boris Johnson’s email list, Tory campaign director Lynton Crosby said today:
“Labour’s chief Transport spokesperson [Maria Eagle] has let the cat out of the bag on Ken Livingstone’s election promise to cut fares. She has confirmed what everybody else knows: there is no money for fare cuts without cutting £1bn worth of investment in services.”
“It is becoming clearer by the day that either Ken Livingstone has no intention of ever cutting fares, or he is working on a behind the scenes plan to cut £1bn of investment.”
Lynton Crosby needs to wake up and smell the coffee. If elected, I will cut fares on or by October 7th. I will resign if I have not done so by that date, precipitating a by-election. I have never been more committed to anything in my life. It’s why I’m in politics – to put the majority first.
Highly-paid out-of-touch right wing political consultants aren’t going to tell me that improving Londoners’ spending power in tough times is the wrong thing to do.
Boris Johnson’s campaign director has invented a plan to cut investment to scare people. It is the worst kind of politics. Some might call it over-claiming. But it’s just the same old Tory lies.
Our fares plan is paid for out of the annual surpluses caused in no small part because the fares are so high they are bringing in more revenue than planned. It will protect investment and existing services. I will be more effective at delivering investment than Boris Johnson.
Unfortunately for Lynton Crosby his assertion about Maria Eagle’s comments doesn’t stack up. There is not one sentence in what Maria said that gets even close to what the Tory spin claims. She just didn’t say it. That’s what I mean about Tory lies.
The Tory-led government imposed a £2.17billion 4-year grant cut on Transport for London in the 2010 Spending Review. I have based all of my calculations for funding my Fare Deal fares cut on TfL’s revised budget which takes this reduced grant into account.
What Maria Eagle said was that Labour would support a portion of this planned cut – £1.73bn. Meaning that under what Maria Eagle said in the Guardian, there would £440m moreavailable to TfL than there is now.
So my fares cut is affordable under either the existing TfL budget, or Maria Eagle’s alternative.
It seems the Tories don’t understand the transport budget. It looks like they haven’t even read it. And they don’t care about Londoners being squeezed through high fares. They want to do everything they can to keep on whacking the fares up.
Our Fare Deal has unequivocally set the agenda in London.
I want change. If you want to join me in making real change happen, show Lynton Crosby what you think. Donate to our campaign here, today, and give our Fare Deal campaign a boost right now.
Ken Livingstone is Labour’s candidate for Mayor of London