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A new poll by YouGov for the Evening Standard has Boris Johnson leading in the race for Mayor of London by 53% to 47% for Ken Livingstone once second preferences are taken into account. A ComRes poll last week had Boris ahead by 6%.

But the lead is down slightly on the last YouGov poll which showed Boris ahead by 8%.

Many will be surprised that Livingstone is holding up as well as he is given that his campaign is such a car crash. But the Livingstone campaign will have been helped by displeasure from voters at the tax increases in the budget. That may have balanced some of the dismay at the revelations over Livingstone's tax avoidance. Also Livingstone has been let off extraordinarily lightly by the media over his expenses claims – including £260 for a pair of shoes.

The latest poll shows Lib Dem candidate Brian Paddick in third place on 7%, Lawrence Webb for UKIP in fourth place on 3% with Green Party candidate Jenny Jones and independent Siobhan Benita joint fifth on 2%. It suggests that the Conservatives will lose a seat on the London Assembly and that UKIP will gain one. The Lib Dems would lose one, the Green Party would lose both their seats and Labour would gain four.

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