Labour Blame Sadiq Khan's ULEZ Scheme For Failing To Win Boris Johnson's Old Seat

Tensions between the London mayor and Keir Starmer are set to increase after the Tory victory.
A "NO 2 ULEZ" sign in a shopping precinct in Uxbridge.
A "NO 2 ULEZ" sign in a shopping precinct in Uxbridge.
Leon Neal via Getty Images

Labour have blamed Sadiq Khan’s controversial road pricing scheme after the party failed to win Boris Johnson’s old seat.

The Labour mayor of London’s decision to expand the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) to cover the whole of the capital dominated the Uxbridge and South Ruislip by-election.

Despite a large swing to Labour, the Conservatives held on to win the seat with a much-reduced majority of 495.

Speaking shortly after the result was announced, shadow justice secretary Steve Reed suggested Khan should consider ditching the ULEZ expansion - which is due to kick in next month - in light of the result.

He told the PA news agency: “I think the winning Conservative candidate just said it, didn’t he? He said that if it wasn’t for ULEZ, he believes Labour would have won this by-election.

“Clearly, it did resonate with a lot of people. They didn’t like the fact that ULEZ was going to cost people more to drive around at a time when there’s a cost-of-living crisis going on. That’s exactly what [Labour candidate] Danny Beales was saying all the way through the campaign.

“But I think when the voters speak, any party that seeks to govern has to listen. So that’s what Labour will be doing after this.”

A Labour source told HuffPost UK: “If Uxbridge helps us junk more crap then good.”

The Uxbridge win was a glimmer of light in an otherwise miserable night for the Tories, with the party losing the previously-safe seats of Somerton and Frome to the Lib Dems and Selby and Ainsty to Labour.


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