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Miliband: Election choice 'between hope and falsehood'

Ed Miliband has hit back at a Tory attack on his party's spending plans, saying the election will be a choice between "hope with us and falsehood from the Conservatives."

The Labour leader told BBC's Breakfast: "The Tories are saying that they want to go back to 1930s levels of public spending as a share of our national income, that's levels of national income not seen for 80 years or so in our country.

Ed Miliband will address Labour party supporters in Salford to mark the launch of his election drive. Credit: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

"I don't believe you can protect the NHS with that kind of plan. It's extreme, it's ideological and I think it will be really bad and damaging for our public services."

Setting out his plans for more integration between health and social care, Miliband insisted that Labour's proposals for a £2.5 billion annual funding boost would ensure the NHS is sustainable.

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Blair says his left-wing warning to Miliband is not right

Tony Blair has denied saying Labour leader Ed Miliband is too left wing to win the next General Election.

The former Labour prime minister told a magazine his party was "traditionally" defeated at the ballot box when presenting "traditional" left-wing policies against "traditional" right-wing opposition.

But Mr Blair took to Twitter to say the comments mis-represented his faith in Mr Miliband's ability to win the 2015 election, as ITV News Political Correspondent Emily Morgan reports.

Miliband promises recovery reaching the 'kitchen table'

Ed Miliband has promised an economic recovery that reaches people's "kitchen table" if he becomes Prime Minister in May.

The Labour leader said in his New Year message, "This is the season for new beginnings and hopes for the future.".

"We have it within our grasp not just to see out the old year but to see out the old ways of running the country," he continued. "Can we do it? Of course we can."

But Tony Blair has cast doubt on whether Labour can win the election fighting on Miliband's "traditional left-wing" platform.

Tony Blair: Miliband remarks 'mis-interpreted'

Tony Blair says his comments about Ed Miliband's chances of winning a general election have been "mis-interpreted".

He had been seen as casting doubt on whether Labour can win the general election fighting on Ed Miliband's "traditional left-wing" platform.

The former prime minister's remarks, in which he acknowledged there was "obviously a difference" between his politics and those of the current leader, came as Mr Miliband appealed to voters ahead of May's poll by offering an economic recovery which "reaches your kitchen table".

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Clegg sets stage for election battle in New Year message

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has set the stage for a bitter General Election battle next year, warning that "a lot of mud will be thrown" in the run-up to polling day.

The Liberal Democrat leader urged voters in his New Year message to give his party the chance of a second term in Government, rejecting the politics of "grievance, fear and blame" offered by their rivals.

Clegg said 2015 should be a "year for optimism" but that the two main parties presented the electorate with a "pretty grim choice".

"This year, a lot of mud will be thrown. A lot of over the top claims will be made, a lot of accusations will be hurled around the place. Ignore them," he added.

David Miliband backs brother as prime minister

Ed and David Miliband. Credit: Reuters

David Miliband has backed his brother Ed saying he would make a good prime minister - and hinted a return to politics may be on the cards.

The former foreign secretary, who lost out in the party's leadership contest to Ed, said his brother has "the clarity, the vision, the determination" to lead the country.

In an interview with the Financial Times, he said his current job as head of NGO International Rescue Committee could be useful for a political career in the future.

He told the paper: "Tony Blair and John Major have said they wish they'd done their post premiership jobs before they became prime minister."

Ed Miliband has endured an intense bout of speculation about his future recently, with deep unrest among the ranks of backbench MPs and claims that some of his top team are plotting against him.

Last month, Tony Blair said he thought Mr Miliband is ''robust enough'' to deal with the swirling unrest over his leadership, and offered his ''full support''.

No new policy, but a change of tone from Miliband

Ed Miliband delivered a speech on the public finances today that was short of new policy detail, but marked a change in tone from the Labour leader.

He has committed his party to balancing the book over the course of the next Parliament.

This would mean budgets falling across Whitehall, except in "a limited number of protected departments", Mr Miliband said.

ITV News Political Editor Tom Bradby reports.

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