Presenting his budget just now the London Mayor highlighted how the appalling ten year record of the current Labour government in caring for children had been shown up by Unicefâ€™s report today.
The Mayor spent most of his short speech excoriating the Conservative group for their calling into question the Mayorâ€™s spending of Â£55 million on young personsâ€™ concessions.
Obviously he did not mention the actual expenditure. He simply talked about the 385,000 young people that receive the concession. In trying to shame the Tories he theatrically listed the number of young people affected in each Tory constituency in turn. In doing so he highlighted the fact that 9 out of 14 GLA geographic constituencies are Tory held as against only 5 Labour ones. 2 Labour members are elected by PR as are the 2 Greens, 5 LibDems and the 2 One London ones making a total of 25 GLA members. Under the GLA Act it takes 2/3 of Assembly members to over-turn the budget. As a result the Mayor has bought the 2 Green members with Â£47 million of green bungs so that 7 Labour members and 2 Greens can defy the other 16 Assembly members to push through a minority budget that will see the Mayorâ€™s share of council taxes going up by 5.3%.