Former Norwich MP Charles Clarke: Labour lacking coherence

Former Norwich South MP Charles Clarke has said Labour still has a 'tough task' to win over voters and leader Ed Miliband has 'a long way to go'.

The former home secretary said his party's recent conference lacked coherence and that they were not making a big enough impact.

Speaking on the BBC's Daily Politics Show today (Tuesday), Mr Clarke said: 'I think the conference itself failed to come across strongly with an alternative to what the government is doing. I think the economic proposition that Labour puts at the moment is unconvincing.'

Mr Clarke, who recently said he would not be standing again for the seat he lost to Liberal Democrat Simon Wright, said: 'I didn't think there was coherence, let's put it politely, in what Ed Miliband was saying and the main job for the new team is to get a coherent set of policy propositions. I don't think he's a particularly big problem but I think he's still got a long way to go. That's the name of the game.

'But I don't think he's succeeded and I don't think his party conference speech succeeded in setting out a vision and picture for where Labour ought to be and how it ought to be challenging the Conservative/ Liberals.'

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But he added Mr Miliband had time on his side and had made some good decisions, including the creation yesterday of a new shadow cabinet, which he described as 'a good decision moving in the right way'.

He said the coalition was 'not doing very well' and had 'a whole set of very ill-conceived reform proposals' which had not been thought through.

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