The Conservative Party’s decision to hold an open primary to select its London Mayoral candidate could favour the homosexual candidate, it has been claimed.
In a sense, a millionaire homosexual like Ivan Massow would be the perfect fit for today’s modern Tories.
But he faces opposition from Zac Goldsmith, who, although also a millionaire, is resolutely heterosexual and a strong eurosceptic. Goldsmith is MP for Heathrow flight-path constituency Richmond Park in Surrey. He is also an environmentalist and, as one might imagine, is fiercely opposed to a third runway at Heathrow.
To add a little more spice, Mr Goldsmith recruited former Conservative MP and gay marriage opponent Nick de Bois as his campaign manager when he asked his Richmond Park constituents whether he should run for Mayor.
Now, London voters who have been registered as members of the Tory party for at least three months will be able to participate in the primary election in an online ballot, according to Mr Massow.
Crucially for Mr Massow, non-Tory voters will also be able to participate in the online ballot if they are already registered to vote in London and pre-register for the online primary. Individual candidates will be allowed to spend up to £100,000 in the nominating process, according to reports.
Mr Massow, who declared his intention to run for mayor in May, said he was “delighted” at the news of the primary.
“I’ve spent the last almost year working towards a mayoral bid knowing the only way I could win it is with this primary,” he told City A.M.
“This blows the competition wide open. Had it been just Conservative members it would have been very difficult for me to have beaten Zac [Goldsmith], who’s very popular in west London, where most Conservative members live.
“My pitch to the party is a broader appeal.”
Footballer Sol Campbell is also expected to stand, as is Andrew Boff, leader of the Conservative Group on the London Assembly.
The primary is expected to be held in September.
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