Sunday, November 7, 1999 Published at 18:38 GMT
Gloves off in mayoral battle
Ken Livingstone's allegations were dismissed by Frank Dobson's team
The fight to be official Labour candidate for Mayor of London has intensified after Ken Livingstone accused rival Frank Dobson of having privileged access to wealthy party donors.
Interviewed on BBC Radio 5 Live, Mr Livingstone said donations to his campaign had averaged around £14-15.
But a spokesman for Mr Dobson's campaign dismissed the allegation out of hand.
"He has just made it up, he's got it wrong. It is not true," the spokesman said.
And a Labour Party spokesman added: "This is just not true. It is utter, utter tosh."
He told BBC One's On the Record: "In the run-up to the election I did not believe we were serious about not increasing taxes. And I have been proved to be right.
"We haven't increased the top rate of tax and the standard rate of tax, but we have increased a lot of other taxes. We needed to because there was a huge deficit."
The Brent East MP said he would "mobilise a campaign" if he was barred from the shortlist of Labour candidates for the nomination.
On Saturday, a Dobson supporter who visited his campaign headquarters said he saw a centrally-held list of Labour's London membership on a computer screen there.
Mr Dobson insisted Labour's Millbank headquarters had not been helping his campaign and told any "bright young things" there to "keep their stupid noses out".
He has asked for the membership list to be made available to Mr Livingstone and Hampstead and Highgate MP Glenda Jackson, who is also contesting the candidacy.
The Conservatives have already chosen Jeffrey Archer as their candidate, and the Lib Dems Susan Kramer.
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