Tessa Jowell has a record of delivery that is second to none, and I know she can beat the Tories

11th August, 2015 6:40 am

Tessa Jowell 3

It starts with a look. Then a double take. Then a smile. A moment to work up the confidence and then they come over. Tessa cannot leave the house without meeting new people who want to say hello. I have seen this a hundred times, and believe me it’s not normal – no other politician inspires such warmth.

Tessa is a star. She is Labour’s Kylie – everyone loves her and she only needs one name. She has a remarkable way with people that generates real affection. But that’s not why I’m backing her to be Mayor.

I backed Tessa right from the start because she has the right values to make London a fairer place to live. Through Sure Start and the Olympics she has a record of delivery that is second to none, and I know she can beat the Tories.

And today, I’m more sure than ever. But it’s not just because the opinion polls show she’s the only candidate who can beat the Tories – though they do and by a country mile. It’s because she has set out a genuinely compelling vision.

One London – where everyone can share in the city’s success. A positive optimistic vision of a city where every Londoner has a place to call home, and every Londoner has the chance to succeed.

Tessa has got bold plans to get London building again from her very first day in City Hall, and she’ll get the Mayor’s office fighting inequality throughout a child’s life from the first 1,000 days to the first day at work.  

Tessa is fair, open, ambitious and optimistic, utterly decent and highly principled. She has fought to put our Labour values into action her whole life. She was a childcare officer in Brixton, then a psychiatric social worker in Southwark. As a councillor in Camden she fought for equal pay when people told her it was a waste of time – but she kept going and she won.

As an MP she beat the odds to win fantastic new schools for her constituents. And I think we all know what she did in the Cabinet – with David Blunkett she created and introduced Sure Start, which is (along with the NHS and the minimum wage) one of the purest expressions of Labour values you could find.

And that’s without mentioning the small matter of convincing a sceptical department, Cabinet and then world that London should hold the 2012 Olympic Games. Tessa is tireless, fearless, Labour to her core and by God she gets results.

London faces enormous challenges over the next few years – a housing crisis and a Tory government for a start. So Labour has to choose a candidate who can win next May. But more than that we have to select someone who can make a real difference.

London needs someone with the experience and the expertise to get the city building the homes it needs, make public transport work for Londoners at a price they can afford, and tackle the inequality that risks tearing the city apart.

That’s Tessa. It has to be Tessa. Tessa is the candidate that can win, and she’s the Mayor who can deliver.

Just think what she can do if we get behind her. More homes, better transport, unleashing young Londoners full potential whatever their background. She can build One London – where everyone shares in this great city’s success. That’s worth fighting for, that’s why I’m backing Tessa, and that’s why I’m asking you to give her your support as well.

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