Miliband red-faced over radio gaffe

Herald Series: Ed Miliband came unstuck in an interview regarding Labour in Swindon Ed Miliband came unstuck in an interview regarding Labour in Swindon

Labour leader Ed Miliband got caught out in a regional radio interview when he was unable to identify his party's leader on the local borough council and appeared not to know the authority was Conservative-led.

Mr Miliband was ambushed on BBC Wiltshire when presenter Ben Prater asked him what he thought of Jim Grant, without explaining who Cllr Grant was.

The Labour leader initially said that "lots of Labour representatives" were doing a good job, but then had to ask Prater to "enlighten me" about Grant. When told who he was, Mr Miliband blundered again by suggesting that he was the leader of Swindon Borough Council, rather than just part of the Labour opposition.

The interview - one of a series of down-the-line chats Mr Miliband has done as part of his campaign for Thursday's local and European elections - attracted the attention of Westminster reporters after being highlighted by the Guido Fawkes political website.

It got off to a bad start when Prater tried to hand over to the station's weather reporter, only to be greeted by the words "Hello, it's Ed Miliband." "Ed Miliband, you don't want to do the weather for us do you?" he joked, receiving the reply: "No, I think I might get it wrong."

And things did not go much better once the interview started in earnest, with Mr Prater repeatedly asking the Labour leader why he had not visited Swindon more often, before asking him his opinion of the local politician:

BP: " What do you make of Jim Grant?"

EM: "I beg your pardon?"

BP: "Jim Grant, do you think he has done a good job?"

EM: "I think that lots of Labour representatives are doing a good job right across the country and I..."

BP: "You do know who Jim Grant is, Mr Miliband?"

EM: "You will enlighten me, I am sure."

BP: "Swindon Labour leader."

EM: "Yeah, I think he is doing a good job."

BP: "Will he feel like you support him enough if you don't even know his name?"

EM: "Well he is doing a good job as leader of the council, Jim is, and I think that is the case."

BP: "I mean it's Swindon Labour leader. Do you think by your comments now people might be a bit perplexed by why you wouldn't know who Jim Grant is?"

EM: "No, I know that Jim is doing a good job for Swindon and I think he is doing a good job as leader of the council."

BP: "But he is not the leader of the council is he, Mr Miliband? It's a Conservative led council."

EM: "I think he is doing a good job for Labour on the council. I think he is doing a good job for Labour on the council."

BP: "So let's be clear. Who runs Swindon council?"

EM: "It's a Conservative-controlled council."

Comments (5)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

7:14pm Tue 20 May 14

Shropshirelad says...

Now, I wonder if the Daily Mail, the BBC and all the other media outlets will use this awful gaffe to denigrate Miliband and the Labour Party as they did with Nigel Farage and UKIP recently when the UKIP interview was not half as bad as this - but of course, that assumes that the Daily Mail and the BBC and all the others approach issues with an honest and even hand. There has been a concerted attempt to blacken UKIP when all the other parties have things that will not stand up to close scrutiny but this will scarcely get a mention. Today. we had that odious character Clegg of the Lib Dems insult just about everybody on the BBC who had no time for the EU, short of turning the air blue with expletives they were everything that Clegg could lay his tongue to, now, I wonder if the BBC will labour this or if it will be quoted in the Daily Mail. What a dirty unprincipled business politics and our national media are.
Now, I wonder if the Daily Mail, the BBC and all the other media outlets will use this awful gaffe to denigrate Miliband and the Labour Party as they did with Nigel Farage and UKIP recently when the UKIP interview was not half as bad as this - but of course, that assumes that the Daily Mail and the BBC and all the others approach issues with an honest and even hand. There has been a concerted attempt to blacken UKIP when all the other parties have things that will not stand up to close scrutiny but this will scarcely get a mention. Today. we had that odious character Clegg of the Lib Dems insult just about everybody on the BBC who had no time for the EU, short of turning the air blue with expletives they were everything that Clegg could lay his tongue to, now, I wonder if the BBC will labour this or if it will be quoted in the Daily Mail. What a dirty unprincipled business politics and our national media are. Shropshirelad
  • Score: 6

8:07pm Tue 20 May 14

MSG says...

Good to see this bad Labour publicity. I hope Ed is in charge for the general election as he makes Michael Foot look good !
Good to see this bad Labour publicity. I hope Ed is in charge for the general election as he makes Michael Foot look good ! MSG
  • Score: 4

8:37pm Tue 20 May 14

Darwen Malc says...

Shropshirelad wrote:
Now, I wonder if the Daily Mail, the BBC and all the other media outlets will use this awful gaffe to denigrate Miliband and the Labour Party as they did with Nigel Farage and UKIP recently when the UKIP interview was not half as bad as this - but of course, that assumes that the Daily Mail and the BBC and all the others approach issues with an honest and even hand. There has been a concerted attempt to blacken UKIP when all the other parties have things that will not stand up to close scrutiny but this will scarcely get a mention. Today. we had that odious character Clegg of the Lib Dems insult just about everybody on the BBC who had no time for the EU, short of turning the air blue with expletives they were everything that Clegg could lay his tongue to, now, I wonder if the BBC will labour this or if it will be quoted in the Daily Mail. What a dirty unprincipled business politics and our national media are.
Well said. I too noticed how the Mail, the BBC and their ilk are trying desperately to derail UKIP whilst conveniently ignoring anything untoward with any of the other mainstream parties and their candidates. Its disgusting really and shows just how biased our media actually is. And another thing that grates is the fact, no matter how odious the BNP are, they have every right to have party political broadcasts without them being censored.
[quote][p][bold]Shropshirelad[/bold] wrote: Now, I wonder if the Daily Mail, the BBC and all the other media outlets will use this awful gaffe to denigrate Miliband and the Labour Party as they did with Nigel Farage and UKIP recently when the UKIP interview was not half as bad as this - but of course, that assumes that the Daily Mail and the BBC and all the others approach issues with an honest and even hand. There has been a concerted attempt to blacken UKIP when all the other parties have things that will not stand up to close scrutiny but this will scarcely get a mention. Today. we had that odious character Clegg of the Lib Dems insult just about everybody on the BBC who had no time for the EU, short of turning the air blue with expletives they were everything that Clegg could lay his tongue to, now, I wonder if the BBC will labour this or if it will be quoted in the Daily Mail. What a dirty unprincipled business politics and our national media are.[/p][/quote]Well said. I too noticed how the Mail, the BBC and their ilk are trying desperately to derail UKIP whilst conveniently ignoring anything untoward with any of the other mainstream parties and their candidates. Its disgusting really and shows just how biased our media actually is. And another thing that grates is the fact, no matter how odious the BNP are, they have every right to have party political broadcasts without them being censored. Darwen Malc
  • Score: 4

8:56pm Tue 20 May 14

Jackaranda says...

MSG wrote:
Good to see this bad Labour publicity. I hope Ed is in charge for the general election as he makes Michael Foot look good !
He will be in charge, and there's a good chance this cretin may become Prime Minister, be very afraid!!
[quote][p][bold]MSG[/bold] wrote: Good to see this bad Labour publicity. I hope Ed is in charge for the general election as he makes Michael Foot look good ![/p][/quote]He will be in charge, and there's a good chance this cretin may become Prime Minister, be very afraid!! Jackaranda
  • Score: 1

6:10pm Wed 21 May 14

welshmen says...

Ed Milliband, "what a plonker"....vote UKIP save our Country from these Commie's....
Ed Milliband, "what a plonker"....vote UKIP save our Country from these Commie's.... welshmen
  • Score: 0
Post a comment

Remember you are personally responsible for what you post on this site and must abide by our site terms. Do not post anything that is false, abusive or malicious. If you wish to complain, please use the ‘report this post’ link.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree