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Jamie Driscoll predicts 'people-powered political earthquake' as poll shows him neck and neck with Labour

NORTH EAST independent mayoral candidate Jamie Driscoll predicted a “people-powered political earthquake” in the region as polls showed the left candidate almost neck and neck with his Labour opponent.

A new poll by More in Common showed Mr Driscoll on 33 points, just two points behind Labour’s Kim McGuinness, ahead of Thursday’s election of the first mayor of the newly created constituency.

Mr Driscoll was Labour’s mayor of North of Tyne but the Labour Party blocked him from standing for the new, larger North East constituency despite a successful track record on issues such as job creation and child poverty. 

Reacting to the poll, he said: “A huge number of voters want an independent mayor, free from Westminster influence, who can put the north-east first.

“Trust in traditional political parties is at an all-time low. People are sick of the posturing and back-stabbing in London, while nothing gets fixed up here.

“I’m an engineer by trade, fixing broken systems is what I do. I worked cross-party to land us the best funded devolution deal in the country. 

"That approach has helped me create thousands of new jobs and homes, increase adult skills enrolments by 60 per cent, boost our offshore wind sector and deliver a Child Poverty Prevention Programme in 100 schools — all without putting a penny on the council tax or taking on any debt.

“It’s clear on the doorstep that most people want Rishi Sunak out of government. But this isn’t a general election. This is about the north-east. 

“So many people have said they finally feel free to vote for the candidate they want and not simply the rosette they wear.”

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