Miliband ‘yet to convince’ warning

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Ed Miliband has received a fresh warning that he is yet to convince voters he is ready to lead the country amid growing Labour nervousness over the party’s dwindling opinion poll lead.

Former minister David Lammy became the latest senior Labour figure to speak out, warning the party had become overly focused on the issue of living standards without spelling out its “positive offer” for people to vote for them.

One of the party’s biggest donors, businessman John Mills, said they had become “boxed in” on the economy with a strategy differing little from the Tories.

Mr Miliband’s leadership has come under renewed pressure after his failure to respond directly to measures in last week’s Budget was seen to have handed the Tories a political victory, with opinion polls showing the two main parties level-pegging.

Mr Lammy said that, with 14 months to the general election, Labour was in danger of being drawn into a fight on the Conservatives’ ground.

“The central message is about living standards and energy prices. The electorate will need more in a raft of areas and we need to be careful we are not solely fighting the election on the current Government’s ground.”