‘I will never ignore your voice’ – Sadiq Khan speaks to all Londoners after mayoral re-election

After two days of counting, Sadiq Khan has been re-elected as mayor of London for the 2021-2024 term, calling for unity over division in his first speech after re-election.

The incumbent took 1,206,034 votes after second preferences were taken into account, beating the conservative Shaun Bailey, who obtained 977,601.

The election saw a turnout of 42.2%, three points under the 45.3% of London’s electorate that voted in 2016.

In his victory speech, Sadiq Khan said: “I want to say thank you from the bottom of my heart.

“I promise to strain every sinew, to help build a better and brighter future for London.

“I want to thank everyone who voted for me, Labour voters and non-Labour voters.

“And I also want to speak directly to every Londoner who didn’t vote for me this week: I will never ignore your voice, your concerns or your worries.”

Khan lost 4.2% of his share of the vote in comparison to his 2016 result, partially a reflection of the lower turnout linked to the pandemic and the gains made by the Green Party.

Khan said: “The results of the elections around the UK show that our country, even our city, remain deeply divided.

“There’s a growing gap between our cities and our towns.

“We all have a responsibility to do everything we can to build the bridges that can bring us together rather than the walls that can divide us further apart.”

Shaun Bailey, the Conservative candidate for mayor, did not deliver the blow to Labour he promised.

He managed 35.28% of the first-preference votes – the exact same vote share Zac Goldsmith took in 2016.

Bailey recalled his own upbringing in his concession speech, and thanked Londoners for not writing him off as pollsters, journalists and other politicians had done.

He said: “I am proud that my campaign was able to shine a light on things that many Londoner’s feel they are being unheard on.

“I want to start by thanking everyone who supported me, those who voted Conservative for their first time, but most importantly those who gave a chance to a young black boy from Ladbroke Grove in west London.

“I also want to thank my mum, all of this is only possible because of my mum, and my wonderful wife Ellie and my two children, who believed in me when sometimes I didn’t believe in me.”

The Green Party claimed success on the night, with Sian Berry taking 7.82% of the vote, up from 5.8% in the previous election.

Before final results were announced, Berry said: “It’s been a really good day today and we’re set for a record result.

“I’m very pleased with the increase in support in every area of London, particularly coming second in two constituencies which had 20% share of the vote.

“We’ve led a positive campaign which is true to our values, like cleaner air.

“Londoners want a green recovery and positive ideas, they are fed up with bigger parties and tribal ideas and they voted for us for positive reasons, because we bring positive new ideas for London.”

The night was not as successful for the Liberal Democrats.

With under 5% of the vote tallied to her name, Luisa Porritt will not recover the £10,000 deposit required to run as mayor of London.

The 4.41% Porritt gathered overall is just under the 4.6% her counterpart Caroline Pidgeon obtained in 2016.

The final results for the London-wide members of the London Assembly are expected to come in at the end of the night.

The assembly oversees the work done by the mayor and holds him to account on his campaign promises to create jobs and tackle air pollution, crime and the housing crisis.

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