Ken holds slim lead in mayoral race

Incumbent London mayor Ken Livingstone has developed a slim lead in the polls before Thursday’s vote, a poll suggests.

Thirty-seven per cent of respondents said they planned to vote for the Labour candidate as their choice to be mayor of London, compared to 34 per cent for Conservative challenger Boris Johnson.

Mr Livingstone has successfully reversed a three-point deficit seen by voters in the last 11 days, reflecting other polls which show the incumbent developing a small advantage.

The Labour mayor also leads in terms of victory expectations, with 47 per cent of respondents believing he will win a third term in office. Mr Johnson has 45 per cent of the vote.

Green party candidate Sian Berry is up to third place in the poll, with ten per cent saying they plan on voting for her. That pushes Liberal Democrat candidate Brian Paddick down to fourth place on nine per cent.

In the Assembly vote the Greens have also won greater support than the Lib Dems, who stand on ten per cent compared to the Greens’ 13.5 per cent.

A Conservative victory is predicted in the Assembly, with the Tories expected to take 32 per cent compared to Labour’s 22 per cent.

The British National party (BNP) stands on six per cent. This is an increase from the 4.8 per cent the far-right group took in the 2004 election and would be enough to ensure it a seat on the Assembly.

George Galloway’s Respect party seem unlikely to match that achievement, however. Only three per cent of respondents said they planned to vote for him on the Assembly ticket.