LONDON, Jan. 20 (UPI) -- A poll gives former London Mayor Ken Livingstone a lead over the man who ousted him in 2008, Conservative Boris Johnson.
The YouGov poll is the first in which Johnson has fallen behind Livingstone, The Independent reported Friday. The two men were in a virtual tie, with 51 percent of those surveyed saying they support Livingstone and 49 percent Johnson.
The poll found a majority say they find Johnson more likable but many prefer Livingstone's positions on issues.
Livingstone, nicknamed "Red Ken," served as mayor from 2000 to 2008. He lost to Johnson in 2008 at a time when the Labor Party was enduring an electoral backlash after more than a decade in power.
He has recently been attacking the increases in transit fares that took effect Jan. 1 and promised to cut fares 5 percent if he is elected.
Johnson's image has shifted with the public, YouGov President Peter Kellner said.
"The proportion saying Boris is 'in touch with the concerns of ordinary people' has tumbled since June from 20 per cent to 13 per cent," he said. "A bearable score has become a terrible one."
No polling details were reported.