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Oona tipped to fight Boris next time round for Mayor vote

PUBLISHED: 14:35 01 July 2008 | UPDATED: 13:24 05 October 2010

NEW Tory Mayor of London Boris Johnson has barely had time to get his feet under the table at City Hall when names are already being put forward by defeated Labour for his successor in 2012. Bethnal Green & Bow’s former Labour MP Oona King’s name is in the ring for a start

Julia Gregory

NEW Tory Mayor of London Boris Johnson has barely had time to get his feet under the table at City Hall when names are already being put forward by defeated Labour for his successor in 2012.

Bethnal Green & Bow's former Labour MP Oona King's name has been put into the ring... at least by newspaper columnists.

She was one of the most famous scalps of the 2005 General Election when she lost her seat to anti-war left winger George Galloway.

Since then she has landed a job as a political adviser to Gordon Brown at Downing Street, written her memoirs House Music and recently made a record about genocide with London soul artist J Da Costa.

Her other appointments include fellowship of Chatham House political think tank and chair of the East End's Rich Mix arts centre in her former constituency.

Now Oona is being suggested as an ideal candidate to represent Labour in the fight to replace Boris in four years' time, the year the mayor will play a starring role in the 2012 London Olympics.

One London columnist said that Oona's passion about housing and transport issues would stand her in good stead.

Johann Hari said: "By 2012, we may well have a mixed-race President of the US.

"What better symbol of London than to pick a black-Jewish woman who has dedicated her career to lifting up the poor of all races as our leader?"

If she decides to go for the Big Job at City Hall, she may be up against TV's Apprentice host and lifelong Labour supporter Sir Alan Sugar who said he would not rule it out.

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