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Labour Leadership Contest

Interview: Labour leadership frontrunner David Miliband speaks to

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  1. Did you phone him out of the blue? He seemed completely unprepared, lacked knowledge on pertinent issues and says he has an open mind on marriage equality (i.e. no thanks) but then says transgendered couples shouldn’t have Government interfere. Well how’s that going to work? Very disappointing.

  2. what is it with both Milibands, they say so much that means absolutely nothing!

    They truly are the children of Blair, Brown, Campbell and Mandlson.


  4. He’s not very good at interviews is he, I’m not sure I got anything out of this , I think comment 1 sums it up…. anyway who are these friends of his his who have had CPs , can we have their views on whether they’d prefer a marrage or CP , do they (all) really regard them as equal . I thought his mate Chris Bryant MP was saying that gay marriages were the way forward or did I dream that one up?

  5. Patrick James 7 Jul 2010, 8:23pm

    Well, I read the interview with interest because I will be voting in the Labour leadership as I am a Labour party member.

    He did seem rather unprepared which is not good news.

    I wait to see how the other candidates fair.

    For me the most appealing thing about David Milliband is that he is an atheist, like me. I am a member of the British Humanist Association and so I would love to see an atheist leader of the Labour Party and Prime Minister.

    I look forward to interviews with the other contenders for the Labour leadership with great interest.

  6. I was with 3 friends today (of various disabilities) in the House of Commons to lobby MP’s to sign Early Day Motion 393. As is the way with some MP’s they will not sign either because they don’t sign any EDM’s or its not the range of interests they have.

    I approached several MP’s Simon Hughes, Michael Gove, Bob Russell to name a few. All took the information and Mr. Gove, though unable to sign because he is a minister said he would, when asked, mention it to his colleagues.

    Veronica & the chair of the APPG HIV/AIDs were very engaging and it was good for them to get the impact not just as I relate it to them but from my friends that are not HIV+ and have other disabilities.

    Of the 30+ MP’s I approached all but 3 were, in my view, rude to me. No smile, no interpersonal skills and certainly a feeling was given of “don’t hassle me”. Which I accept we were doing but we were very polite.

    David Miliband is one of the three.

    Even those that for whatever reason said they wouldn’t sign were a least polite to us and some even engaged more. Because although they don’t sign EDM’s they are interested in the issue. That of the Medical assessments planned for DLA.

    Another close friend and I discuss who we would prefer to lead the Labour Party. Although Diane Abbot has been very good to me ( even though I am not a constituent. I have always preferred Ed Miliband. Today, this encounter with his brother bought home to me, with out a shadow of a doubt, lacks the interpersonal skills to deal with people, essential to be a successful leader of anything.

  7. With these answers, if Miliband is elected Labour leader, I’ll be voting Conservative at the next election.

  8. I think most people reading this will be thinking that his amswer on marriage equality is not good enough.

    Yes, Labour did well to bring in civil partnerships, but we are in a different era now and civil partnerships were just a stepping stone to marriage equality.

    If he wants to look progressive and to boost his support he should come out strongly in favour of mariage equality.

  9. If he is an atheist then what POSSIBLE reason could he have for not ENTHUSIASTICALLY supporting FULL access to ALL civil institutions by ALL citizens?

  10. He is basically supporting what the Tories plan to do with things like Bullying and international. Nothing new and no support for gay marriage so why change.

  11. Very disappointing. Even in Labour there is a recognition that, at best, he will only be a caretaker leader.

    The asylum seeker part was the most dismal piece, since it is on the advice of Foreign Office officials that immigration judges have been sending gay people back to persecution.

  12. What an extraordinarily weak interview.

    His tone appears both unprepared and patronising.

    And Mr Milliband – just a quiok question- you personally may believe that civil partnership apartheid is ‘totally equal’ – well if so then why did your government go to such bother to create the legislation to deny gay couples access to civil marriage. Wouldn’t it have been FAR easier to merely adjust the rules governing civil marriage.

    And secondly – does he seriously think we can have ANY respect for him if he is so willing to toady up to that vile bigot Josef Ratzinger?

  13. “the most appealing thing about David Milliband is that he is an atheist”

    Well what possible excuse can he have to support denying equal access to civil marriage to gay people.

    And how on EARTH can an atheist believe that a visit by Josef Ratzinger will be good for the country.

  14. vulpus_rex 8 Jul 2010, 12:33pm

    Well David Milliband is about the hottest of the contenders but that’s not saying much.

    I of course want the ever repulsive Ed Balls to win – he will guarantee that Labour spend the next 20 years in opposition – hurray for Blinky!

  15. With these kind of unprepared and weak responses I don’t think Cameron need worry about this guy as well – isn’t he a bit like Julia Gillard, Aussie PM, an aehiest and towing the labour policy of continuing inequality and not interested one bit I suspect in gay marriage, the impression I get from his answers are that LGBT issues hold very little interest to him….Atheist MPs/PMs and labour are not doing well at the moment on LGBT issues!

  16. The fact that David Milliband’s brother Ed Milliband is also running for the Labour leadership does not sound a ringing endorsement of either of the brothers. If they cannot even keep their own family united then I doubt either of them will be a good PM.

    If I was to grade David Millibands interview I would mark is D-.

    Must try harder!

  17. Charlie-o 8 Jul 2010, 7:31pm

    What a stump! Not only was he totally unprepared, he was not able to articulate any reason for LGBT people to vote either for him or for Labour. Actually, he made a good case for there currently not being any difference between Lab and Tory on LGBT issues. Generalities like wanting “to build a more equal country” are merely platitudes when they aren’t backed up by specifics.

    Yes, we should welcome the Pope, because WE should be more tolerant. (Huh??) And since he goes to his friends’ posh commitment cerimonies that look very much like marriage cerimonies, we should be satisfied with Separate but Equal. (Memo to Milibrand: Pick up a book on the civil rights struggle in America during the 50’s: there’s really no such thing as separate but equal – it’s never really equal!)

    Hopefully one of the other Labour hopefuls can do a lot better than this empty suit.

  18. theotherone 9 Jul 2010, 12:11pm

    What a ar5eh0le!

    NO to Queer Marriage, NO to Asylum for Queers NO to Employment Equality, NO knowledge of the issues or how his Party wrecked Queer Rights.

    Makes you wonder if he spent his time in Government soaking up the money that allowed him to but a large Mansion with a few acres of land around it (he often invited Dignitaries from other countries to come and see his rather large Mansion bought using Tax Payer’s money.)

  19. @ theotherone

    Of course he did. Labour’s whole purpose in government wasn’t to serve the public but to actually help themselves to as much as they could get away with.

  20. What an idiot he is! How can he say that CPs are completely equal to marriage when they’re not even marriages or recognised as such? If the Labour or Tory parties view them as marriages, then change the law to reflect that, end of discussion.

    To digress, although Ireland passed its own version of civil partnerships, it goes one step further than ours, by allowing straight couples access to them who don’t want to marry. That alone should tell Labour and Tory parties in the UK that the two are definitely NOT equal and never will be. Irish civil partnerships like ours are not recognised as marriages either.

  21. theotherone 9 Jul 2010, 2:13pm

    what I find interesting is that in a recent ruling involving the Gender Recognition Board the Government put up (according to reports I’ve read) little or no case against the law (put in place by Labour) that stated that if you wanted to go through the Gender Recognition Board you had to dissolve any existing marriage.

    We not have, in law anyway, a Gay Marriage in this country and we, it could be argued, have no Legal bar against further Gay Marriages.

    Has the Lib/ Con Pact introduced Gay Marriage through the back door?

    No matter if this was the intent or not they must have known the outcome of not mounting an effective defense. So on one side we have this and on the other Millipede barring Gay Marriage yet again. Wow.

    Oh and how could he not know about the Deportation of Queer Asylum Seekers when it was tied to HIS department? Was he asleep? Did he pop out to cultivate his ridiculous facial hair? We need to know.

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