Former foreign minister David Miliband said on Monday he would not put himself forward to run Britain’s opposition Labor Party and criticized his brother Ed, the outgoing leader, for allowing himself to be seen as taking the party too far back to the left.
Ed Miliband, who beat his older and better known brother in a 2010 Labor leadership contest, quit on Friday after the party suffered a heavy election defeat.
“I’m clearly not a candidate in this leadership election … The commitment I have to the job I have got doesn’t change as a result of the election,” David Miliband, who left the British parliament in 2013 and now runs an aid agency in New York, said in a BBC interview.
Ed Miliband was widely seen as having steered the party leftwards from the centrist “New Labor” of Tony Blair, who won three elections in a row to be prime minister from 1997 to 2007.
David Miliband, a one-time Blair ally, said his brother had allowed himself “to be portrayed as moving backwards from the principles of aspiration and inclusion that are at the absolute heart of any successful progressive political project.”
“The answer is not to go back to 1997, it is to build on the achievements and remedy the weaknesses but never to end up in a position where the electorate think you are going backwards rather than addressing the issues of the future,” he said.