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Labour still 'party of working people' - Miliband

Labour still 'party of working people' - Miliband

Ed Miliband has insisted that Labour remains "the party of working people" in the wake of Emily Thornberry's resignation from the Shadow Cabinet over a tweeted photo of a flag-bedecked house and white van.

Ms Thornberry was accused of snobbery by politicians from several parties – including her own – after tweeting the image, with Nigel Farage saying she had "let Miliband’s mask slip".

But writing in the Mirror, the Labour leader said he had been "furious" at the former Shadow Attorney General's tweet, and questioned Ukip's claim to be the new party of workers.

"It is time we levelled with people about Ukip. They’ve got away with it for too long. They think working mothers aren’t worth as much as men. They think the NHS would be better off privatised," he wrote.

"They think workers should have fewer rights and bankers should have bigger bonuses."

Mr Miliband added that while "people rightly feel a sense of loss about the past", the answer "is not to return to a more unequal, more unjust past" but "to go out and fight for what we believe in".

Ed Balls denied this afternoon that the party leadership had overreacted to Ms Thornberry's tweet, branding it "ridiculous and out of touch".

"I think [for] most people...if you see a white van, it’s probably a plumber. If you see a St George’s flag, it’s probably teenage kids who support England," the Shadow Chancellor told BBC News.

"The idea that that combination is unusual – there may be a planet where that’s true, but not in Britain."

Meanwhile, Labour's Simon Danczuk has said the incident "suggests there's a huge fight ahead to reclaim Labour's soul".

In an article for the Sun, the Rochdale MP said that while Mr Miliband's reaction to the tweet was "to his credit", the party was "confusing" voters with "too much bland Metropolitan smoothness and not enough grit".

"Labour's founder Keir Hardie never would have mocked proud working people and it's time the Metropolitan luvvies remembered our roots," he added.


Green Box: Labour still 'party of working people' - MilibandClick to open

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