Thursday News Review

The fightback goes on…

Liberal Lines

“LABOUR leadership contender Ed Miliband launched a withering attack on the Liberal Democrats during a trip to the Senedd yesterday, accusing them of selling out their principles to prop up a right-wing Tory Government.” – Western Mail

“How can the Liberals support a Budget which puts 100,000 more people out of work while raising the only tax that the unemployed have to pay? And what about charities that help the elderly and the poor? The Charity Tax Reform Group says the Budget will cost charities in Britain at least £140million a year in higher VAT bills. That’s equal to the total money raised on the last three nights of Comic Relief.” – Ed Balls, The Mirror

“Have you been impressed by Labour’s response to their election defeat? Hmmm. Next question: is anyone listening to Labour’s complaints that the Liberal Democrats have “betrayed” themselves and everything that is nice and sweet and wholesome about this pleasant land? Best move on from that one too. Sunny Hundal makes a good argument that, at the very least, it is much too soon for Labour to be taking this line.” – The Spectator

Daily roundup

“However Diane Abbott, Labour leadership contender and MP for Hackney North and Stoke Newington, said the government’s suggestion that it was changing the system to encourage people to go into work was based on a misconception about the types of people who claim the benefit. “Only one in eight claiming housing benefit is unemployed,” said Abbott.” – The Guardian

“Tonbridge and Malling Labour Party members have voted to back David Miliband in the party leadership contest.” – Kent News

As a junior Home Office minister and a hardline champion of identity cards, he was known as Andy “Flog ‘Em And” Burnham. Now, Labour colleagues question whether the youngest leadership candidate is too nice for the top job. Burnham is the politest of the bunch, and his long eyelashes have earned him a new nickname: Ermintrude, after the matronly cow in The Magic Roundabout.” – The New Statesman

A Dutch flavour to events

“Losing an election and then fighting a leadership contest seems to have loosened the tongues of more than one Labour hopeful. Following Ed Balls’ concession that not imposing controls on immigration from the European Union in 2004 was a mistake, Andy Burnham was quick to proclaim that Labour has been “in denial” over immigration for far too long. I think he must mean in denial of the electoral consequences, not the numbers.”  – Tribune

“The NHS has been ranked the most efficient health service in a major new international study. The British system provides the best value for money according to the Commonwealth Fund’s comparison of seven major countries. And only Holland is a better place to be a patient. Proud ex-Labour Health Secretary Andy Burnham, said: “This blows apart Tory claims that the NHS wasted money under Labour.” – The Mirror

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