A family affair. A tale of two brothers. Cliches abound when it comes to describing Britain’s Labour leadership contest. But today just one of the Milibands, Ed or David, is set to be named the party’s new boss, with a mission to take it back into Downing Street.
Whatever the rivalries, former Foreign Secretary David, who is favoured by centrists, is stressing unity all the way.
“Of course, we are not just a party that is a family, we are a family that is family, so we always say family is more important than politics,” he said.
There was a similar message from his younger, more left-leaning sibling Ed, as he arrived in Manchester for Labour’s annual congress. Ed, too, served under Gordon Brown in a government that lost power in May.
“I think the priority for all of us is to unite as a party and move forward and be a credible opposition,” Ed Miliband said. “I will do that if I am the leader and will work with others if I am not.”
Labour MPs, MEPs, party members and members of trade unions have all taken part in the vote. The Milibands have pulled ahead of the three other candidates, analysts say, with today’s result deemed too close to call.