Profile: Jenny Jones

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Jenny Jones: Struggles to be heard, but enjoys an accomplished political career.
Jenny Jones: Struggles to be heard, but enjoyes an accomplished political career.

Jenny Jones is easily overlooked in mayoral debates. The Green candidate struggles to speak above her opponents and she can sometimes seem too timid to be proper leadership material. But Jones has a harsh, combative side which has won her friends in high places and earned her a degree of prominence in the capital's political scene.

A former archaeologist who spent a decade studying carbonised plant remains in the Middle East, Jones is now one of the most well-known figures in the Green party. She has been victorious in all three elections since the London Assembly was created, back in 2000.

Ken Livingstone offered her the deputy mayor position in 2003, where she served for a year as part of a system which rotated figures from other parties. That system came to a predictable end when he refused to offer it to the Tories and had his offer turned down by the Liberal Democrats.

The close relationship between Jones and Ken lived on, however. She called for her supporters to offer him their second preference vote in the 2012 election and stated that he was easier to work with on environmental issues than Boris Johnson.


On the London Assembly, Jones campaigned hard on transport, housing and planning but she earned most of her column inches due to civil liberties issues as a member of the Metropolitan Police Authority. It was there that she took on the Met on issues such as the death of Ian Tomlinson.

After being kettled at a demonstration herself, the Green candidate opposed the tactic with gusto and branded it an abuse of power. It was part of a pattern for a candidate who has always shown considerable sympathy for protest movements. She even spent a night with the Occupy camp when it was based around St Paul's Cathedral.

Analysts originally suggested Jones could end up in third place, benefiting from Brian Paddick's association with the Liberal Democrats. Current polling suggests the junior coalition partners might be able to keep that bronze spot, while Jones battles it out with Ukip and independent candidate Siobhan Benita for fourth. That would be a disappointing result for a party which just managed to get its first MP elected. But perhaps that pit bull tendency will win through and help Jones to a surprisingly strong result.

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