Potential Tory candidate for 2024 London mayoral election revealed

By Noah Vickers, Local Democracy Reporter

A possible Conservative opponent to Sadiq Khan at the next London mayoral election in 2024 has been revealed.

Nick Rogers, a London Assembly Member, has said he is considering nominating himself to be the Tory candidate against Labour mayor Mr Khan next year.

If he enters and is selected, Mr Rogers, 37, would be the party’s youngest candidate to date.

The politician, who represents the boroughs of Hounslow, Richmond-upon-Thames and Kingston-upon-Thames on the Assembly, said that if he ran, he would offer a policy platform which addresses the “millennial condition”.

Mr Rogers said: “I have been considering it for a while, and I’ve been speaking to colleagues and also thinking a bit about what we as a party need to do in order to win the next mayoral election.

“I think the choice of our candidate is so important, because we need to run a campaign that strikes the right tone and talks to the right people and hits the right issues.

“The tone has to be one of positivity, it really does. It needs to be a positive, forward-looking, optimistic campaign that recognises London is the greatest city in the world, but the best can still get better.”

He added that he was “not a career politician” and that he had “relevant, real-world experience”, having worked on the railways and as a former special constable in the Met.

Mr Rogers, who has served on the Assembly since 2021, said his party’s failure to win over younger voters was “approaching the level of an existential issue for the party”.

“We need to address it. The place to do that, I’m convinced, is in our next mayoral campaign. That’s the place we can do that. I think it’s actually an opportunity for the party,” he said.

“In London, we can get out ahead of this issue. We can set the tone for the party in the rest of the country. Who better to stand up for millennial Londoners than a millennial Londoner?”

The Assembly Member said he was confident Mr Khan is beatable at the next election – and that the incumbent Mayor had made himself “very vulnerable” due to his planned expansion of the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ).

“That is an issue that is uniting people across the party divide, in opposition,” he said, adding that if he were mayor, he would scrap the plan.

Mr Rogers said his party needed to make “solid offerings” for millennial Londoners, including a “manifesto for renters” – with specific policies for people who don’t yet own their own home in the capital.

If he decides to run, Mr Rogers will join his fellow Assembly Member Andrew Boff, along with former No 10 adviser Samuel Kasumu in vying for the Conservative nomination.

Paul Scully, the Minister for London and MP for Sutton and Cheam, has also said he may allow his name to go forward if he thought he was the “best-placed person” to defeat Mr Khan.

It is not yet known when in 2023 the party will nominate their candidate.

Pictured top: Nick Rogers, Conservative London Assembly Member (Picture: London Assembly)

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