Labour denies plans to sell off Tote

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The Independent Online
Labour will not privatise the Tote despite indications at the weekend that it was planning to do so. A party spokesman last night confirmed a statement from the the party's foreign affairs spokesman, Robin Cook, who is in charge of policy development, that there were no such proposals.

Gordon Brown and Jack Straw, the Shadow Chancellor and the home affairs spokesman, agreed on Sunday that the betting board would remain in the public sector, the party spokesman said. A story in a Sunday newspaper, backed by comments from Tony Blair's office, had suggested it might be sold for up to pounds 400m.

Meanwhile the Conservatives are due to launch a new attack on Labour today, warning that a Blair government would cost families an extra pounds 2,300 a year in tax. A poster campaign claims Labour would let public spending soar out of control by copying other EU countries.