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Boris Johnson webchat, TODAY, Mon 16 Apr, 11.30am-12.30pm(205 Posts)
In the run up to the London Mayoral elections in May, we're very pleased to announce that Boris Johnson will be joining us for a webchat on Monday 16th April from 11.30am to 12.30pm. In May 2008, Boris was elected the first Conservative Mayor of London. He was the MP for Henley-on-Thames from 2001 to 2007, and held the posts of Vice Chairman, Shadow Minister for the Arts and Shadow Minister of Higher Education.
Do please join us for the webchat. Boris is keen to hear your views and to answer your questions. As ever, if you can't make it, please post up your advance questions here.
Ahhh pants. Forgot to revert to my polite username to ask that question so I expect I will get roundly ignored.
Boris, you have a popular image as a bit of a philanderer who doesn't take women or women's issues seriously. Is it true you axed the role of Women's Adviser on taking power? And can you tell us about the women on your management team? What women have you recruited to top posts and what percentage do they form of your senior management team? Can you tell us as well about how many Conservative Assembly members are women, and what contribution they are making to your policies? Thank you.
I've seen that you've attended hustings relating to gay rights, disability rights and black rights. The Fawcett Society is holding a hustings with the LSE in a couple of weeks and it is billed as the Women's hustings. All of the other candidates are attending, however, you're not. Please can you explain why you are not attending considering how important women voters will be in this election and given that all of the other candidates are?
Why does the word "childcare" not appear in your manifesto?
Patriae nimis cogitat de Londinium et non satis ceteris eius populus?
Sorry, that perhaps should have read patria, it's a long time since I did OL Latin.
(Apologies to Miss Howard and Mrs Pinsent)
I am actually a huge supporter of The Olympics (although extremely disappointed that I didn't get allocated any tickets) however I really think the Tube is not able to cope with such an influx of visitors.
On Tuesday I had to go to work and all three lines I use were suspended. I only had a four hour shift so my workplace advised me that there was no point me coming in as I would be an hour late. This meant my Oyster was charged a huge amount for me going up and down the tube line trying to find an alternative route and I missed out on money I was depending on as I only get paid hourly when I am physically doing my job. And this was without the Olympics!!! (I have contacted TFL but no reply as yet).
My DP is going to work from home but I work at a major heritage site in a customer facing role so there is no way that I can do this. I think people who live in London will face these problems and for me I really cannot afford to lose money because I physically cannot get into my place of work.
What would you suggest/provisions are in place for Londoners travelling during the Olympics?
You've been a vocal critic of Labour's spending record, and yet your own while in office has been .. well, let's tot it up.
5 new Routemasters = £7.8m. The hubristic Greenwich cable car = £60m - originally trumpeted as costing the taxpayer nada, now likely to be be bailed out by us because - surprise - costs have ballooned and private funding has scarpered.
Another pet project, the Outer London Fund = £40m. All borrowed, despite the fact that the Assembly said the business case for borrowing £40 million for the Outer London Fund has not yet been made.
In total you have borrowed, or plan to borrow, £110 million pounds - using up the GLA's entire borrowing capacity and costing we Londoners £10m in interest and loan repayments per year, for an unspecified period.
Any explanation for the gaping chasm between 'say' and 'do' here?
MNHQ - are we getting all the candidates on for webchats? If we're having Boris and Ken, its only fair to the others to be offerred the opportunity to come on.
Boris - London Riots: what would you have done differently in retrospect? As the gulf between the haves and have nots is only set to widen, I'm not alone in suspecting more discontent and potential riot situations so how would you as Mayor address this?
Hi, at the moment we're only planning to have Ken and Boris but have blogs coming from Brian Paddick (Libdems), Siobhan Benita (Independent) and Jenny Jones (Green) and hopefully Lawrence Webb (Ukip). So that's all the candidates except the BNP one.
If there were demand for more webchats, I'm sure they'd be happy to come on, we haven't asked as yet because we've taken the view that it's a London election so a bit marginal, but let us know if you'd like us to do otherwise.
I read your guest blog post where you mention steps youve taken to ensure our children can play outside. On top of planting street trees, and restoring green spaces would you commit to protecting those green spaces too? The QEII Fields Challenge (www.qe2fields.com/default.aspx) gives councils the opportunity to protect parks & pitches forever but sadly it hasnt had as much take up in London as elsewhere. Would you take it up as a mayoral pledge?
thanks for your time.
And, if I can have one more quickie - how can it be possible for you to earn £250K (more than 10 times the national wage) from the Telegraph AND your generous, publicly-funded £143,911 mayor's salary?
One of your employers is getting a bum deal - which is it, me, or the Torygraph?
I'm not the only mum on here who worries about money, in fact it's probably my biggest worry right now. It's not just rising food and fuel prices though, it's the huge costs of childcare - it's criminal that if I go back to work all I earn will go on childcare, so what's the point?
My question: Why did you abolish the Chilcare Affordability Programme?
Why have you not said anything about gender equality in your manifesto - do you not think that it's important?
Justine I'd love to have a webchat with all the candidates but understand it is a bit London-centric.
Simple question: Why have you taken away our South London Rail line?
How can you justify the Olympic tube upgrades being shouldered by the working poor in fare hikes?
I have to a) commute with my child to school by tube and bus as he didn't receive a place at a local school and then b) take a second bus to my NMW paying job. On my way home when time is not of the essence I walk to the tube station saving one bus fare.
Saying the tubes needed to be upgraded anyway doesn't wash - it wouldn't have had to be done so quickly, and if working people were going to pay for it, the NMW should have been raised to reflect it.
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what's your favourite biscuit Boris?
My question is this;
As a member of the 'haves' in society, do you think it's fair that the 'have nots' or the 'have less' are the people who are being hammered to sort out the deficit? Whilst the people on the highest salaries have had their tax cut from 50% to 45%, because 50% is 'too much', people on 50-60k are being taxed at a marginal rate of 72% because of the child benefit cuts (we lose £720 out of every £1000 above 50k, and keep only £280). People on low incomes are losing thousands of pounds in WTC, because of the changes in the rules about number of hours worked, which is madness in a time of high and rising unemployment.
If you were in the Government would you be embarrassed by the string of cock-ups demonstrating their incompetence, stupidity and prioritising the rich?
* Child Benefit (Still grossly unfair, despite the revision)
* Granny Tax
* Pasty Tax
* Fuel debacle
* Charities mess - slashing money from charities, rather than clamping down on offshore banking, transfer to spouses, trust funds, paying in dividends - hey, lets take the money from the charities instead.
The government is a shambles. (Sorry I know that's kind of 2 questions - i) is it fair to hammer the poor and help the rich, and ii) would you be embarrassed to be in the government?, but hope that's ok).
Can I sneak one more in please that I thought of as I hit 'Post Message' - ignore if you like!
Bristol is holding a referendum on having an elected mayor. In your opinion, how would Bristol benefit from this, and are there some negatives to be aware of, as we decide how to vote?
Also this is a comment rather than a question. Just to observe that by replacing bendy buses with routemasters, it effectively halved the space on the bus for buggies. Which means I can regularly no longer get on the number 29 bus with my children. I know it's a small thing compared with employment, childcare, infrastructure, policing etc but it annoys me a lot!
<from the woman trying to hold her two month old in her teeth while folding a buggy with one hand and using the other to stop her pre-schooler legging it>
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