Attacking Ed Miliband

17/01/2012
Issue of the day: Attacking Ed Miliband
Issue of the day: Attacking Ed Miliband

The left's debate over how to respond to the coalition's spending cuts is focusing on Ed Miliband's leadership today.

An outspoken attack against the leader of the opposition by Unite general secretary Len McCluskey is the latest piece of bad news for Mr Miliband.

Disquiet between Labour and its main funders, the unions, is nothing new. But Mr Miliband had hoped to avoid confrontation during his leadership.

As pundits monitor his response to the challenge, which appears as unmoving as previous Labour leaders have been, the debate continues about whether Labour should accept the need for spending cuts at the level the coalition is making them.

Union leaders are complaining that the opposition accepts the bulk of the fiscal responsibility arguments put forward by the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats.

Labour would have made spending cuts had it won the 2010 general election - but its past decisions are now seen to be a moot point as the general election fades into the past.

Shadow chancellor Ed Balls, who has previously been seen as one of the opposition's more pugnacious opponents of spending cuts, conceded at the weekend that he could not promise to reverse any of the government's cuts.

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