Ed Miliband has 15 months to save his leadership
Last updated at 11:17 AM on 14th June 2011
- David Miliband 'considering return to Shadow Cabinet'
Ed Miliband was warned that he has just 15 months to prove he can be Prime Minister yesterday as he relaunched his embattled leadership.
Senior Blairites made clear that Labour’s frontman is on borrowed time after a stumbling start to his time in charge.
Mr Miliband sought to win back disgruntled voters by taking a leaf out of David Cameron’s political playbook, talking tough on welfare scroungers and overpaid bankers.
Ed Miliband has been forced on to the offensive after a week in which disquiet at his leadership has burst to the surface
He vowed that Labour would be a ‘party of grafters’ and called for greater social responsibility from the idle and the super-rich.
But Mr Miliband was accused of being ‘all talk and no trousers’ by Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith, since the Labour leader refused to back up his rhetoric by supporting the Government’s Welfare Reform Bill which was going through the Commons yesterday.
Liam Bryne, a flagwaver for the Blairite rump of Labour, indicated that the party needs to see progress
Mr Miliband was forced on to the offensive after a week in which disquiet at his leadership has burst to the surface, amid claims that he is still in a bitter feud with his brother David, whom he beat to the Labour crown.
However it emerged last night David is considering a surprise comeback in an attempt to end speculation about a rift with his brother.
A source told The Independent: 'There is a debate going on. Some people are arguing that it would be better to be a team player than look as though he is sulking on the sidelines.'
Friends of the former Foreign Secretary said the prospect of him joining the Shadow Cabinet was a 'live issue'.
Aides of the Labour leader have insisted he would welcome his brother's return to the party.
Labour’s work and pensions spokesman Liam Byrne, a flagwaver for the Blairite rump of Labour, indicated that the party needs to see progress.
Asked how long he would give Mr Miliband, he said: ‘It is actually going to take a couple of years for us to start developing the policy that we need for the future.’
But Mr Miliband has already had nine months in charge in which he has presided over worse local election results than those of Michael Foot.
In his speech Mr Miliband yesterday admitted that Labour had lost support because voters believed their taxes were being used to fund bankers and ‘some people on benefits who aren’t bothering to work’.
But he told his MPs not to support the Government’s Welfare Reform Bill. Labour officials said they objected to plans which would take tax credits from those with savings over £16,000.
Put on the spot about his leadership, Tony Blair yesterday gave Mr Miliband only a tepid endorsement, saying he was merely ‘content’ to support him.
Share this article:
Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below, or debate this issue live on our message boards.
The comments below have not been moderated.
All he has to do is come up with a new and innovative crop of lies, in true Blair tradition, and he'll be alright. Not terribly difficult, when you think about it. The average Labour voter will swallow anything. They also have the memory span of a gnat so he could always recycle some of Blair's from 1997.
- The Original Ray, Liverpool, 14/6/2011 12:56
I voted for Ed because I want a Labour party that moves away from the plutarchy that we currently have and restores equality to the level we had before Thatcher.
- graham, stoke-on-trent, 14/6/2011 12:50
Ed Milliband needs to go now. He was voted in because of the Union block vote and is seen my many, especially readers of The Sun, as a Union man. Labour will be unelectable with him in charge due to this perception, especially if the Unions keep up their threats of mass strikes this summer.
- Andrew, London W1, 14/6/2011 12:39
NEVER NOT A CHANCE - LABOUR HAVE MADE THEIR BED NOW THEY MUST LIE IN IT HOPEFULLY FOR ETERNITY
- GAZ, PRESTON, 14/6/2011 12:25
all present breed of politicians whether tory or labour, have never done one day of honest work in life with their CV,s the most they can achieve in real world, is to be an office assistant in a small firm they are professional politicians trained to be dodgy and lie at a drop of hat till we do not put some experience/qualifications limits, as to who is fit to lead we will have to do with pygmies who are only fit to be on the forecourt of a used car dealership
- Kathy, Rainham, Kent, 14/6/2011 12:12
Well done unions, you gave us an unelectable opposition, just to achieve a tactical vote. I hope you're happy with yourselves now that we're doomed to the full five years of the condems. - Mr Mark 1977, Worthing, 14/6/2011 11:29 *** Well for once I'd lioke to thank the unions for their seldless sacrifice. Whenever the election comes the Limp Dems and Losers Party will get routed and replaced with a strong Conservative government that can get on with transforming this broken Country back to one where the workers are more valued than the shirkers.
- alimac, berkshire, 14/6/2011 12:00
The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline.