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More than half support Labour's mansion tax proposals

Kensington and Chelsea is the capital's most expensive borough - where the average price of a home is more than £1 million Credit: Reuters

More than half of consumers believe Labour's proposals for a mansion tax on properties worth over £2 million are a good idea - but over a third still think the plans are unfair.

The results come from a national survey by Rightmove - who found that 52% supported the proposals while 38% thought it would be a bad idea.

London would be disproportionately hit by the tax if - with 72% of the affected properties in the capital, and a further 16% in the South-East.

Estate agents have criticised the move as effectively being a tax on Londoners who already have to battle with stamp duty charges due to rocketing house prices:

If the mansion tax is introduced, those sellers who have had their homes valued at over £2 million will need to lower their expectations on the deal they'll be able to get, in the same way stamp duty bands affect asking prices.

Whilst it could help raise funds for other causes, according to our survey there are a large proportion of people who wouldn't be affected by it who still think it's unfair.

– Miles Shipside, Rightmove director


'Part-time mayor' Boris criticised amid election rumours

Labour has criticised Boris Johnson as a "part-time" mayor amid continued speculation that he will return as an MP before the end of his current term.

Renewed speculation in newspapers today suggested that Mr Johnson would announce his intention to stand for parliament at next year's general election by the summer.

There is renewed speculation about Boris Johnson's plans to stand as an MP. Credit: PA Wire

A Labour source said the party would attack the mayor if he to "further his own political interests at the expense of the needs of Londoners".

Shadow justice secretary Sadiq Khan tweeted: "Wouldn't it be great if London's part-time mayor cared about our future as much as he cares about his own?"

Former mayor Ken Livingstone added: "Whether Boris Johnson is an MP, in the House of Lords or wherever it will make no difference as he doesn't do the day job as it stands, he leaves it to all his deputies."

Calls for changes to search powers

Labour is calling for an overhaul of Stop and Search powers. It claims the impact the rules have on ethic minorities is shameful and that reform is urgently needed.

The arrest rate from searches has improved in London since 2009, but is still under 17%. Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper also wants current guidance on avoiding race discrimination to be replaced with legislation.

MP fined for jumping red light in central London

An Labour MP, who once served as Minister for Sport, has been fined for jumping a red light in central London. Kate Hoey drove her Mini through a signal on Victoria Embankment last July. The light turned red just over a second before.

Vauxhall MP, Kate Hoey Credit: Press Association

Kate Hoey, who has been MP for Vauxhall since 1989, was fined £240 after admitting going through the red light. She was also given three penalty points.

Londoners to vote in US-style mayoral primaries

Londoners will be able to vote in American presidential-style primaries to choose Labour's next candidate for mayor.

Party members and people who register as Labour supporters can have their say.

The change announced today by Ed Miliband reduces the impact of trade unions on the selection of candidates.

The details now from our Political Correspondent Simon Harris


Londoners to choose 2016 Labour mayoral candidate

Labour leader Ed Miliband announced he has appointed former Labour general secretary and union official Lord (Ray) Collins of Highbury to lead work on the introduction of a new system, which will consider an open primary process for the London mayoral candidate selection.

Lord Collins will also consider how the proposals could be spread to other parts of the country.

  • Under Mr Miliband's proposals, any Londoner registering as a Labour supporter will be eligible to vote in the ballot to choose a candidate to replace Boris Johnson in 2016.
  • A new code of conduct will be drawn up to cover all applicants to be Labour parliamentary candidates.

Miliband to introduce open primary elections for mayor

Ed Miliband who remains locked in an increasingly bitter dispute with Labour's biggest trade union backer. Credit: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

Ed Miliband has set out a series of reforms designed to reshape Labour's relationship with the trade unions and end the "machine politics" behind the alleged ballot-rigging controversy in Falkirk.

In changes which could provoke a major clash with the union bosses who bankroll his party, Mr Miliband said he would reform the system of affiliating union members to Labour.

He also said he would introduce a code of conduct for would-be election candidates and introduce open primary elections for Labour's next candidate for London Mayor.

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