Sunday, 6 November 2011

Ken Livingstone: He Did Say That

The story of the man with the newts, and scourge of Maggie Thatcher, Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, is actually more nuanced and more interesting. In the early 80s, as leader of the soon-to-be-dissolved GLC, Livingstone pursued an agenda for equality for gay people and other minorities that is now the norm. (Who would have thought that a Conservative prime minister would have told his party conference he was proud to be supporting gay marriage?) The London boss was denounced for all of that, as he was for embracing Irish republicans – only for the Labour government, a decade later, to welcome Martin McGuinness as Northern Ireland's deputy first minister...

John Kampfner reviews Ken Livingstone's autobiography You Can't Say That for The Observer.
Mr Livingstone has always strck me a thoroughly decent chap.
I remember when he first became an MP he gave such a powerful and moving speech in the final debate about Section 28 - one of thew voices of dissent - that I sent him a fan letter.
And he sent a very sweet letter back...

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