The candidates for Labour’s metropolitan mayors in Manchester and the West Midlands are expected to be announced today while the result of the Liverpool selection expected tomorrow.
All regions are expected to deliver Labour victories in the elections next May. The announcements will see the start of campaigning from each of the candidates, who will have nine months to reach out the electorate ahead of the 2017 elections.
In total, four MPs are standing in the contests. Andy Burnham and Ivan Lewis are looking to leave Westminster politics for the Manchester role, going up against the interim mayor Tony Lloyd.
Former frontbencher Luciana Berger, along with Liverpool Walton MP Steve Rotheram have made a bid for selection in Liverpool, going up against Joe Anderson, who is the current mayor of the city. Berger is the only woman to be standing in any of the mayoral selections.
No MPs are standing the West Midlands contest, where Local MEP Siôn Simon and councillor Steve Bedser are going head to head for the nomination.
Voting closed on Friday and the results were originally expected to be announced yesterday, but were delayed following the High Court ruling on the leadership election.
There are differences in each of the mayors’ briefs, but all will have large budgets to allocate to local transport, housing and skills provision. Additionally, the Manchester and Liverpool mayors will oversee some healthcare provision.
The position is the outcome of former Chancellor George Osborne’s devolution project, which sees decisions returned to a more local level. However, many have criticised the development of the positions for forcing others to take responsibility for relatively deprived areas which deserve more attention from Westminster.