Third time lucky: Andy Burnham open to running for Labour in 2024

12 May 2022, 19:54 | Updated: 19 October 2022, 11:29

Andy Burnham doesn't rule out running to lead Labour

By Emma Soteriou

Andy Burnham has confirmed that he would be open to running as Labour leader for a third time.

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Speaking on LBC's Tonight with Andrew Marr, Mr Burnham said there is a possibility he could return as an MP in a few years and run, once he has finished his second term as Mayor of Greater Manchester.

He previously ran for the role in 2010 and 2015, but has since gained recognition for his mayoral work in the north.

"Have you given any thought at all to returning to the House of Commons?" Andrew asked.

Mr Burnham's immediate response was: "Not soon."

He later added: "I have stood twice and so obviously I wouldn't be being honest with you if I said I never wanted to do it.

"Third time lucky?" Andrew asked.

"Well, who knows. One day I would. I have a really important job to do here - I am in the middle of a second term and I'm serving a full second term.

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"But if at some point in the future, beyond all of this, it was felt that I could do something to support the party then I would.

"I would only go back to deal with some issues that I was talking about before - a fundamental rewiring of Britain is what I would be going back to do."

Read more: Andrew Marr: Levelling up is the government's 'moral purpose'

Andy Burnham calls for 'rewiring of the whole country' in levelling up

Mr Burnham earlier explained that "the nations and regions of the UK are not equally represented in our own Parliament - therefore Parliament is weighted towards one part of the country, 'the golden triangle', and we have a very unequal country".

The golden triangle refers to the triangle formed by the university cities of Cambridge, London and Oxford.

He said: "Actually more radical change is needed for Levelling Up, you have to rewire the whole country, in my view, to support the Levelling Up idea."

You can also listen to the podcast Tonight with Andrew Marr only on Global Player.

However, the Greater Manchester mayor said he was fully behind current leader Sir Keir Starmer for the time being, saying he believed he could win the next general election.

"I'm not a member of Parliament, therefore the rules of the Labour Party say that I can't stand - that's a fact," Mr Burnham said.

He went on to explain: "I would consider it one day but not now.

"I support Keir and what he's trying to do.

"I think he's put himself in a position where he can lead the next Government after this one, and I think the country really desperately needs that change."

In the meantime, he said he would be open to a third term as mayor if the opportunity came his way.