Ed Miliband backs Chuka Umunna over drugs confession
Monday 02 July 2012
Labour leader Ed Miliband has backed Chuka Umunna after the shadow business secretary admitted in an interview to smoking marijuana as a teenager.
Mr Miliband insisted that "everybody" was entitled to a youthful past before they entered public life, adding that 33-year-old Mr Umunna is doing a "good job".
"I think everybody is entitled to a past, and a youthful past if you like, before they go into public life," Mr Miliband told ITV's Daybreak.
"I think Chuka was asked a question and I think people are fed up with politicians not providing straight answers and he answered the question straight. I think that is fair enough.
"He is not taking drugs now, he is doing his job and he is doing a good job."
Mr Miliband's remarks come after Mr Umunna, a rising star in the Labour Party, told the Sunday Times that he had smoked marijuana when he was a teenager hoping to become a DJ. He said he briefly ran a club night in Brixton, south London.
"I've smoked soft drugs. But it's not something I'm proud of and I don't think it's news any more, to be honest," he told the newspaper.
Asked what he had smoked, he said: "Certainly nothing beyond marijuana. That industry is rife with it. That was a part of the industry I found unattractive."
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