The other Dobson quits race for mayor

Enemies to the left of him, enemies to the right of him, Frank Dobson finally bowed to the inevitable yesterday and quit the mayor of London race.

Unfortunately for Ken Livingstone, the dead Dobbo in question was Frank S Dobson, the retired publisher from Surrey, rather than Frank G Dobson, the retired secretary of state for Health from Camden, north London.

The 65-year-old namesake of Labour's official candidate for mayor announced that the financial and administrative cost of running for the top job was simply too much for him.

Frank S Dobson threw the mayoral race into confusion when he announced to The Independent earlier this month that he was joining the contest. Fed up with the whole idea of a new layer of bureaucracy for the capital, he said he was running on a platform of opposition to the creation of the Greater London Assembly and mayor.

Yet yesterday, Mr Dobson said that he was abandoning his campaign because of sheer cost and red tape put in the way of hopeful mayors. He had failed to meet the electoral hurdle of getting the backing of 10 voters in each of the 33 London boroughs. The £10,000 deposit, despite an offer from an anonymous donor, had also proved too difficult to raise. He would also have needed another £10,000 for publicity.

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