In an unexpected development, the mayor’s appearance before the London Assembly was abruptly cut short earlier, as opposition parties seized a procedural opportunity to try to defeat his budget aims.
For the mayor’s budget to be rejected and an alternative passed instead, there needs to be a two-thirds majority in the 25-member assembly.
That was theoretically impossible given the nine Conservative members – voting for the mayor’s proposals – represent more than a third.
But, opposition members noticed one Tory assembly member, Victoria Borwick, was missing from the session.
After the mayor had given his opening speech, they declined to question him – expected to last at least an hour – and moved straight to a debate and vote on the budget.