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Dublin: 9 °C Tuesday 7 April, 2020

Boris Johnson beats Ken Livingstone in London mayor battle

In an unexpectedly tight race, the Conservative politician won by 51.5 per cent of the vote to Livingstone’s 48.4 per cent.

Boris Johnson and Ken Livingstone at the election count last night
Boris Johnson and Ken Livingstone at the election count last night
Image: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire

CONSERVATIVE POLITICIAN, WRITER and broadcaster Boris Johnson has beaten Labour candidate Ken Livingstone in the final count of the election to win a second term as London’s mayor.

Johnson will serve his second four-year term in the role, which has responsibility for transport, housing and policies for London.

In a closer election than the polls had predicted, Johnson secured 51.5 per cent of the final vote after transfers compared to Livingstone’s 48.4 per cent. The Conservative politician secured 1,054,811 votes compared to Livingstone’s 992,273, the Guardian reports.

Turnout for the election was 38 per cent. The Green Party candidate came in third place with the Liberal Democrat candidate in fourth place.

Livingstone, a long-time politician for the Labour party who was the first elected Mayor of London from 2000 until 2008, announced he was stepping down from electoral politics after the result was announced after midnight last night.

The mayoral election used the supplementary vote system in which voters could vote for a first and second preference. Under the system, when the highest polling candidate does not reach 50 per cent of the votes in the first round of counting – as happened in the mayoral election – all but the top two candidates are eliminated from the race. Second preferences from eliminated candidates are then distributed to the top two candidates.

The election took place on the same day as local elections took place across Britain which saw a major swing to the Labour party. The Conservative Party lost around 400 council seats in total.

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