Labour's battle of the brothers gets personal

David Miliband will today make his strongest criticism of his younger brother Ed with the Labour leadership contest getting personal as it reaches a critical stage.

The former foreign secretary will suggest his brother is pandering to Labour's core vote rather than reaching out to the middle classes and that his strategy will keep the party in opposition rather than return it to power.

David Miliband will set out clear dividing lines between him and his brother, seen as the two front-runners in the race to succeed Gordon Brown. Ballot papers will be sent out next week and the result announced on 25 September.

The shadow Foreign Secretary will say that Labour must be an alternative government as well as an effective Opposition. "Opposition is necessary but insufficient. At worst it can take us back into our comfort zone – and our pantomime role in politics," he will say. "We need not just to oppose this Government. We need to defeat them."

David Miliband will insist that he is the best candidate to prevent the Government painting his party as Old Labour. "We need to break out of the mould the Coalition is trying to put us in," he will say. "Their attacks on our record are only the first phase of their campaign. They seek to make Labour irrelevant. I will not let them."

He will say that Labour's leadership contest has spent, "a lot of time looking inwards and backwards, when we need to look outwards and forwards". He will pledge to look "outside our tent" and talk about the change that Britain, rather than the party, needs.

Calling on Labour to shift to the centre ground, he will say: "We must look forwards for new ideas and outwards for a new coalition of voters..

"We are pigeonholed as spendthrift when we need to be prudent; we are seen as accreting power to the state when in fact our mission is to empower individuals, communities and businesses; and we are seen as the establishment when we need to be the insurgents." Yesterday he won the support of his 100th Labour MP.

Ed Miliband, the shadow Energy and Climate Change Secretary, moved to head off his brother's criticism by insisting he is "the moderniser". He said that, since 1997, Labour had lost 1.7 million middle-class voters. But he argued that Labour had lost a total of 5 million voters, with the largest losses amongst the C2, and D and E social classes.

Ed Miliband said: "I am the only candidate who can reach out to those whom we have lost.

"To those middle-class voters who have switched to the Lib Dems I say look at how Labour is changing."

Contenders go negative...

David Miliband on Ed Miliband:

"If I thought Ed would be a better leader than me, I'd be running his campaign."

Ed Miliband to David Miliband:

"I think it [the Iraq war] has been profoundly damaging to Britain, David, and I disagree with you on that."

Diane Abbott on Ed Balls

"If Ed Balls says he was not involved [in Brown-Blair infighting]... it must have been his evil twin brother."

Ed Balls on the Miliband brothers:

"Yvette [Cooper, his wife] and I decided it would have been weird [to run against each other as the Milibands have]. I don't think we really needed to talk about it."

Diane Abbott on the Milibands:

"We're not going to be able to engage with society and, particularly, engage young people in politics, if they see the political class as a caste apart, a strange sort of geeky young men in suits."

Andy Burnham on the Milibands:

"I didn't have well-connected parents. People are looking for politicians who have real-life experience."

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
2015 General Election

Poll of Polls

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Glazier

£16500 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This specialist historic buildi...

Recruitment Genius: Office and Customer Services Manager

£18000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This small but very busy (and f...

Recruitment Genius: Portfolio Administrator

£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company has become known a...

Recruitment Genius: Mechanical and Electrical Engineer - Midlands

£35000 - £38000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This leading provider of refrig...

Day In a Page

War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable
Living with Alzheimer's: What is it really like to be diagnosed with early-onset dementia?

What is it like to live with Alzheimer's?

Depicting early-onset Alzheimer's, the film 'Still Alice' had a profound effect on Joy Watson, who lives with the illness. She tells Kate Hilpern how she's coped with the diagnosis
The Internet of Things: Meet the British salesman who gave real-world items a virtual life

Setting in motion the Internet of Things

British salesman Kevin Ashton gave real-world items a virtual life
Election 2015: Latest polling reveals Tories and Labour on course to win the same number of seats - with the SNP holding the balance of power

Election 2015: A dead heat between Mr Bean and Dick Dastardly!

Lord Ashcroft reveals latest polling – and which character voters associate with each leader
Audiences queue up for 'true stories told live' as cult competition The Moth goes global

Cult competition The Moth goes global

The non-profit 'slam storytelling' competition was founded in 1997 by the novelist George Dawes Green and has seen Malcolm Gladwell, Salman Rushdie and Molly Ringwald all take their turn at the mic
Pakistani women come out fighting: A hard-hitting play focuses on female Muslim boxers

Pakistani women come out fighting

Hard-hitting new play 'No Guts, No Heart, No Glory' focuses on female Muslim boxers
Leonora Carrington transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star

Surreal deal: Leonora Carrington

The artist transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star
LGBT History Month: Pupils discuss topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage

Education: LGBT History Month

Pupils have been discussing topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage
11 best gel eyeliners

Go bold this season: 11 best gel eyeliners

Use an ink pot eyeliner to go bold on the eyes with this season's feline flicked winged liner
Cricket World Cup 2015: Tournament runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

Cricket World Cup runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

The tournament has reached its halfway mark and scores of 300 and amazing catches abound. One thing never changes, though – everyone loves beating England
Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Heptathlete ready to jump at first major title

Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Ready to jump at first major title

After her 2014 was ruined by injury, 21-year-old Briton is leading pentathlete going into this week’s European Indoors. Now she intends to turn form into gold
Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot