Mayor Backs Under Fire Met Chief



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Livingstone hits out at 'plotting politicians'

KEN LIVINGSTONE has emerged as one of the main props keeping Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Ian Blair in his job.

"Politicians are skulking around in plots against the Commissioner, and by extension the Met as a whole," said the London Mayor.

"I wouldn't let these politicians run a bath, let alone take their advice over Sir Ian’s to run the Met."

Blair's position has been under almost constant threat for a couple of years and not only, as Livingstone implies, from politicians.

A series of perceieved blunders have included Blair being found taping the phone calls of politicians and his much-criticised handling of the Jean Charles de Menezes shooting.

In recent days the Commisioner's position was undermined further in an odd incident involving his own Deputy, Paul Stephenson.

Stephenson turned down a financial bonus on the grounds that it would be impolitic to take the cash during the trial of the Met for de Menezes's death, more or less forcing Blair to do the same. Blair was reportedly furious.

Now Stephenson has handed his boss a vote of confidence, which, as football fans know, can often be the precursor of doom. "We continue to enjoy a very strong working relationship," Stephenson said.




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