Labour rejects ‘fear and smear’ claims

By politics.co.uk staff

Labour has hit back at Tory claims that its election leaflets contain inaccuracies about the opposition’s policies.

David Cameron accused Mr Brown of scaring the elderly during last night’s leaders’ debate with claims that the Tories would take away free eye tests, the winter fuel allowance, free bus passes and TV licences.

“These lies you are getting from Labour are pure and simple lies. I have seen these lies and they make me very, very angry,” he said.

Mr Brown insisted that he had not “authorised any leaflets like that”.

This morning shadow education secretary Michael Gove launched a document called ‘Labour’s shameful lies’, which listed 23 examples of Labour leaflets he said were being deceitful.

Mr Gove said Labour had “forfeited the right to govern” because of their “fears and smears”.

“The detail was there, the pledge was there, but still Labour chose to smear,” he said.

Most of the literature highlighted warned that measures like free bus passes for pensioners would be “at risk” under a Tory government.

Labour hit back at a press conference later this morning, accusing the Conservatives of hypocrisy.

“Don’t give us any lectures about frightening scaremongering,” Peter Mandelson said, citing the infamous Tory poster on ‘Brown’s Death Tax’.

“If these things are absent from the manifesto, it is our duty to highlight them and to ask questions at TV debates. If David Cameron wants to make policy up on the hoof under pressure as he did, fine, victory for G. Brown, defeat for D. Cameron.”

Gordon Brown pointed out the Conservative manifesto had said nothing about free prescriptions for the elderly, free eye tests or the date at which pensions would be linked to earnings.

“Now as a result of panic on the part of the Conservative party forced in a moment in a debate to state their policy, we now know the Conservatives have changed,” he said this morning.

“This has all had to be forced out of the Conservatives. It wasn’t in their manifesto. They are not being straight with the British people.”