Lib Dems announce Metro Mayor candidate

The Liberal Democrats have announced their candidate for this year’s Liverpool City Region mayoral election.

On 2 May, voters will go to the polls to choose who they want to lead the six-council combined authority. The organisation has been led by former Labour MP Steve Rotheram since 2017.

Now, Rob McAllister-Bell has been announced as the Metro Mayor candidate for the Liberal Democrats.

Deputy leader of the opposition group on Liverpool Council, Cllr McAllister-Bell was elected to the newly drawn Mossley Hill ward in last year’s all-out city ballot. He has spoken openly about his experiences as an openly gay and disabled man in politics.

Setting out his priorities, the candidate said he wanted to improve public transport across the city region, aiming to introduce tap-and-go ticketing by 2026. His party has pledged to deliver a “Liverpool ready for the next 100 years” and expand the role of current elected representatives in decision-making for the City Region.

Cllr McAllister-Bell said, “It’s a great honour to have been selected as a candidate in this election. Steve has had the Mayoralty for seven years now, and like so many people I wonder what was the point?

“What has he achieved that wouldn’t have happened without him? Now, he’s asking for four more years to really make a difference – that’s just not going to wash with voters in the city region.”

“That’s why I want this election to be about the change that the Liberal Democrats can bring to the City Region. When we took over the Liverpool City Council in 1998, we brought Liverpool One, the Capital of Culture and made long lasting changes that have made Liverpool a great place to live.

“If I’m elected, then I won’t be the mayor on Mann Island. I want to make sure I’m out across the city region, talking to residents, communities, and local leaders.

“Even here in Liverpool the City Region can feel distant because there is no accountability or proper scrutiny. This May, voters have a clear choice that can have Labour’s missing Mayor cooped up in his office or back the Lib Dems for a new change of direction.”

Former Leader of Liverpool City Council, Baron Storey, said, “Rob is a fantastic candidate for the Mayoralty. He is exactly what we need in the City Region, a breath of fresh air to blow away all the cobwebs that Labour have left with their empty promises and half-finished projects.

“It’s time for change and only the Lib Dems can deliver that change.”

Mr Rotheram unveiled his policy platform in a launch event on Monday at the Spine in Paddington Village. The Conservatives have confirmed Jade Adamowicz Marsden will be representing them in the poll in seven weeks’ time.

Image: Rob McAllister-Bell

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