A Tory MP who believes it is a “humiliation” that UK citizens have burgundy passports has thrown his hat into the ring to be the next London Mayor.
Andrew Rosindell, MP for the Essex seat of Romford since 2001, announced he is bidding to be the Tory candidate in the battle for City Hall in two years time.
The Brexit campaigner led the calls for British passports to return to their dark blue origins once the UK has left the EU - despite the fact Brussels rules don’t prevent them being that colour.
“The humiliation of having a pink European Union passport will now soon be over and the United Kingdom nationals can once again feel pride and self-confidence in their own nationality when travelling, just as the Swiss and Americans can do,” he said in 2017.
Rosindell’s candidacy comes after a string of high-profile Tories, including former Education Secretary Justine Greening, ex-Culture Minister Ed Vaizey and Tory rising star James Cleverly all ruled themselves out of taking on Labour Mayor Sadiq Khan.
In a statement on Wednesday evening, Rosindell said: “I took the final decision late last night having been approached by many London activists and have been nominated by a former Cabinet Minister and by a London Conservative Group Leader.
“The current Labour Mayor is going to have to justify his broken promises and explain why City Hall appears to have been abandoned on auto-pilot. The everyday concerns of hardworking people are being ignored. London has to be governed better than this.
“We are seeing a frightening increase in knife crime across London, the cost of living, both in terms of housing and transport has not been addressed and the Mayor’s lack of confidence over the City’s ability to deal with Brexit and a war of words with the President of the United States mean that we are underperforming as an international player.
“The current Mayor is wholly to blame for this and comes across as a man without a plan and in retreat.”
Other Tories seeking the nomination are London Assembly Member Andrew Boff, and Leave.EU co-founder Richard Tice.
The Conservatives plan to announce its candidate for the 2020 election at its party conference in September.