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Tim Montgomerie

We learnt a little while ago that Ed Miliband had ordered his frontbench to use "Tory-led government" when talking about the Government. Mr Miliband's (new and nasty) head of communications has now made the same request of broadcasters. This is what Mr Tom Baldwin wrote in a letter to the media:

"As you may have noticed, we have changed our language in recent weeks to avoid describing the Government as a coalition or a partnership of equals. We believe a more accurate description is that this is a Conservative-led government.

I understand that the phrase a “Tory-led government” is two words too long to be repeated on every occasion. But I also think that you are making a choice whenever you call it “the coalition”. When we were in power, no one was left in any doubt that our most unpopular decisions were those of a “Labour government”. The word “Coalition” is one that avoids party labels while also suggesting a degree of inter-party harmony and co-operation which is, day-by-day and split-by-split, being shown as false.

Unless Nick Boles gets his way, “the Coalition” will not be standing for election.

Can I suggest you at least vary your description of this Tory-led government. On some occasions, you might call it a Conservative-Liberal Democrat government. On others it might be just “the government”.

When you are talking about this government in a political context, I think it would be fairer to refer to it by reference to party labels.

With best wishes, Tom Baldwin,
Director of Labour Strategy and Communications".

Conservative Chairman Sayeeda Warsi has just issued a statement accusing Labour of bullying:

“This futile attempt to control the press is a pretty desperate move by Ed Miliband. It just goes to show that Labour are still up to their old bullying tactics.”

46 comments for: Ed Miliband’s office urges broadcasters to use “Tory-led government” in describing Coalition

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