As the Tory leadership race enters its final hours, bookies favorite Liz Truss has set up her London stand yet again. Writing in the Standard today, the foreign minister pledges to support the capital’s economy, end metro strikes and tackle crime.
We supported Truss because we believe she has the best plan for our town. We hope it will end the leveling of London. It is heartening that she recognizes that the capital is the engine room of the UK economy, but also contains real pockets of poverty and disadvantage which also need to be addressed.
At the same time, despite campaign rhetoric, we hope Truss’ arrival will see a thaw in relations between central government and city hall. Regardless of ideological differences, we need cooperation and coordination between the two. It is, after all, Londoners who are paying the price for divisiveness and political points.
London and Londoners stand ready to lead Britain through these troubled economic waters and into recovery. What we need in return is a government and a premier willing to unlock that potential, for the benefit not just of our city, but of the nation as a whole.
MPs under surveillance
Parliament may be enjoying its long summer recess, but Pestminster is not gone. The continuing crisis has surfaced again following accusations of historic sexual misconduct against a Cabinet minister and number 10 aide to Boris Johnson’s government.
The allegations come as Johnson prepares to end his term as prime minister, which was cut short following the scandal involving his chief deputy, Chris Pincher.
Parliament, like any workplace, should be a safe space for employees and visitors. Yet Westminster is not a normal place to work. It is the seat of our democracy.
Public confidence in individual MPs, Cabinet members and our politics in general is fragile at best. Such allegations should be thoroughly investigated by the parties and the authorities. Our representatives, who interact with voters on a daily basis, must be above reproach.
It takes a lot of courage to come forward in these circumstances. Party politics remains in many ways a closed store where perceived criticism of powerful people – even illegal behavior – is too often viewed as disloyalty.
We must redouble our efforts to rid Parliament of these attitudes and make it clear, once and for all, that the behavior described above will never be tolerated.
A true cultural capital
There’s more art and culture to consume in London than anyone could hope to consume in a year, let alone a weekend. From the most controversial play of the season, Me, Joan, at The Globe to the myriad of exhibitions and galleries across the capital, there is so much to keep us busy and inspired as summer turns into fall. And of course, many of them are free.
Londoners can be forgiven for the odd moment of wondering why we put up with the rent, the strikes and the weather. But there’s a reason people flock to our city. There is so much to do, see and explore, right on our doorstep.