Rotheram slams ‘squatter Sunak’ as he wins third term

Steve Rotheram wins third term as Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor, with the Tories a distant second, and calls on the Prime Minister to ‘stop squatting’ and call a General Election. Tony McDonough reports

Steve Rotheram
Steve Rotheram after winning a third term as Metro Mayor of Liverpool city region


Labour’s Steve Rotheram will be Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor for another four years following a thumping election victory.

This will be Mr Rotheram’s third successive term as Metro Mayor, an office he has now held since 2017. He secured 183,932 votes, a 68% share, and 156,000 votes more than second place Conservative candidate Jade Marsden.

However, turnout was low at just 23.7%, with 272,721 votes cast. Labour’s Emily Spurrell also won re-election as Police and Crime Commissioner for Merseyside. The results for both elections were announced at Liverpool Tennis Centre in Wavertree.

Full results were as follows:

  • Steve Rotheram (Labour) –183,932
  • Jade Marsden (Conservative) – 27,708
  • Tom Crone (Green) – 26,417
  • Rob McAllister-Bell (Liberal Democrats) – 21,366
  • Ian Smith (Independent) – 11,032

In his victory speech, Mr Rotheram called on Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to call a General Election. He said the people of the city region had delivered a message to Mr Sunak that “enough is enough”. And he added that the PM was “squatting in Downing Street”.

“The road to Downing Street runs through transformative Labour administrations in local and regional government,” said. “With Labour in Westminster, we will get to see what real devolution is like, not the limited decentralisation we are seeing now.”

And he also said: “Up and down this country, ordinary people are fed up with the chaos, mismanagement and decline the Tories have presided over.”

This third term is likely to be the one that will decide if his era of devolution has been a success. Until now, he has had to contend with a hostile Conservative Government. But with a Labour General Election victory expected this year that dynamic is sure to change.


Mersey Tidal Power
Image of how the Mersey Tidal Power barrage could look


He is pledging a 25% increase in foreign direct investment by 2030, the introduction of bus franchising, three new Merseyrail stations, a rapid transit scheme, more new homes and apprenticeships.

However, the project that would truly cement his legacy is the plan to build a barrage across the River Mersey that would generate 100 years of carbon-free electricity using the power of the tides.

Considerable Combined Authority resource has already gone into the planning of the project but, with the price tag in the region of £6bn, the plan would require significant investment from Whitehall.

Although a Labour Government would certainly be more willing to give serious consideration to the scheme, both Keir Starmer and Shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves have indicated they intend to keep a tight rein on the public finances.

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