The mayors have already changed the constitution + how power works in England. Mayors can use their elected mandate to make demands that aren't in their list of formal powers and stand up for their area, whether that's stripping Northern Rail of its franchise or buying airports.
Voters understand this, like it, and want more. 83 per cent of voters in areas with metro mayors want their mayor to have more powers. And this goes beyond the parties - the mayors are that rare thing in modern British politics, a genuinely popular institution.
Compare and contrast 33% of voters being able to name their metro mayor, to the 8% who can name their council leaders. For prominent metro mayors that's even higher - 40% of Teesside voters can name Ben Houchen, and 63% of GM residents can name Andy Burnham.
This does depend on mayors going out banging the drum to make a name for themselves. Only 7% of voters could name Tim Bowles, the metro mayor of the West of England around Bristol. And only 3% of West Yorks voters could name a mayoral candidate in their first election in May.
But ultimately, voters like their mayors and want them to have more power. And it's the job of politicians to listen. National Government should publish the promised devolution white paper (and we've set out how this should be done, with mayors for all)
For the mayors, if they want more responsibility, then they need to start making some tough choices. Mayors can only justify getting more power from Whitehall by using the powers they already have to improve their cities, even if the ideas are controversial.
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