Meeting ex-banker London mayoral candidate Brian Rose
- Credit: Brian Rose
"We think we’re going to pull off the biggest upset in British political history on May 6.”
A newcomer on the UK's political scene, Brian Rose is against 19 other candidates to become London's next mayor at the polls on May 6.
He has courted controversy with his self-proclaimed free-speech platform London Real by hosting guests including David Icke, who has been accused of spreading antisemitic and anti-lockdown conspiracy theories.
Born in San Diego, Mr Rose developed a heroin addiction as a banker in New York City.
Moving to London in 2002, Mr Rose got clean and now lives in Hampstead with his family. He claims to have spent “seven figures” on campaign billboards around London.
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Asked about east London projects such as the Silvertown Tunnel, Mr Rose said his Infrastructure Levy was the way forward.
He explained: “This will change the game and allow us to work out if this is the most intelligent use of our spend."
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The podcaster has over two million subscribers on his London Real YouTube Channel, on which he has hosted controversial guests, such as Icke and ex-Guantanamo Bay prisoner Moazzam Begg.
Mr Rose told the Recorder: “Every week I challenge my team to put someone I disagree with in the chair, someone who makes me uncomfortable, because I believe the only way we can learn and grow is to listen to ideas that aren’t our own.”
The so-called free speech advocate started campaigning on October 14, and said he has visited every London borough twice.
In January, he and his team were arrested and given penalty notices for breaching lockdown campaigning in Southwark - something he says "undermines democracy".
The businessman’s 50-page manifesto outlines his solutions to London’s “crime epidemic”, rebuilding the economy, and the housing crisis.
“I feel like I have a PHD in the problems London has,” he said, adding: “Anybody can complain, I bring solutions.”
Top of the list is hiring 10,000 more police officers at an expense of around £300 million.
His Corporates for Communities initiative would see Amazon, HSBC and Barclays funding youth centres and activities.
He said he would "pick up the phone to the CEO of these companies...and I can say I’ve got a win-win situation for you".
The ex-banker would also reduce traffic in London by only allowing electric vehicles into the capital and removing on-street parking.
According to YouGov, Mr Rose is polling at less than two per cent.