The Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer as blamed Sadiq Khan’s ULEZ scheme as the reason why they lost the Uxbridge and South Ruislip by-election.
Sir Keir said he has spoken with the Mayor of London and there will be time for “reflection” and has no doubt they lost the seats due to the controversial ULEZ scheme.
The Labour leader told broadcasters during a visit to Shefford in the Mid Bedfordshire constituency, “I don’t think there is any doubt that ULEZ was the reason that we lost the election in Uxbridge.
“And I have said we should reflect on this, including the mayor [Khan]. I have spoken to him as you would expect, and so there will be that reflection.
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“But we’re not sitting back, we’re not looking over our shoulder. We’re pressing forward.
“There should be an election, a by-election in Mid Bedfordshire, and so I’m here talking to local residents, to people who are now fed up and want a by-election desperately and want to vote Labour.
“So yes, of course we reflect, but we’re moving forward here because the goal is to get to that general election.”
On Friday Sir Keir urged the Mayor of London to “reflect” on next months proposed expansion.
The Conservative Party clung onto power with just a majority shy of 500 votes and Sir Keir claimed that it was always going to “be tough.”
Khan has insisted that ULEZ is the right decision saying, “But just like nobody will accept drinking dirty water, why accept dirty air?”
At the end of August ULEZ will be expanded to all of London’s borders which sees drivers having to pay £12.50 per day to drive in the zone if their car does not meet emissions standards.
Khan defended the by-election loss in Uxbridge, saying, “I have lived in London my entire life [and] this seat has never been Labour since I’ve been alive, including in 1997 in the Tony Blair landslide and the subsequent by-election a few months later.
“But I am quite clear though, the policy to expand the Ultra Low Emission Zone is the right one.”
He added, that “Four million Londoners are already benefiting.
“What about the other five million in outer London, where there is the largest number of premature deaths?
“The 10 boroughs with the largest number of premature deaths are in outer London [and] it is the poorest Londoners who are least likely to own a car that suffer the consequences.”