Ed Miliband slams Brexit as a ‘race to the bottom’ during Luton speech

Former Labour leader Ed Miliband questioned the records of the Leave campaign's leaders
Former Labour leader Ed Miliband questioned the records of the Leave campaign's leaders

Former Labour leader Ed Miliband urged his party’s members to vote to stay in the European Union during an address in Luton this morning.

Speaking to an assortment of activists, councillors and local members at the UK Centre for Carnival Arts, Mr Miliband claimed that a vote for Brexit would create a “free market race to the bottom Britain”.

Mr Miliband spoke at the UK Centre for Carnival Arts on St Mary's Road, Luton

Mr Miliband spoke at the UK Centre for Carnival Arts on St Mary's Road, Luton

He urged the audience to ‘think’ about those backing campaigns to leave the European Union.

Mr Miliband said: “Think if they are friends of Labour.

“Boris Johnson, not knowingly a friend of Labour voters.

“Michael Gove, Nigel Farage.

Thursday's referendum is expected to be a tight contest

Thursday's referendum is expected to be a tight contest

“I don’t think any of them as friends of working people.

“I don’t think that because of their records, their ideologies or what they stand for.”

Listing Barack Obama and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as supporters of the Remain campaign, Mr Miliband then poured scorn on his opposite numbers.

He said: “To be fair they have got aspiring world leaders – they have got Donald Trump.

“I know which team I would rather be on.”

Opinion polls show that Friday’s result is too close to call, but also suggest a shift towards keeping Britain in the European Union.

During a Q+A on Monday Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn admitted that is “not a lover” of the EU, adding that he will not “take the blame” if Britain decides to vote out.

Speaking to the Luton News this morning, Mr Miliband defended the party leader’s contributions to the Remain campaign.

He said: “Jeremy’s position is quite close to where a lot of people are – they don’t love Europe or think it is perfect but they think that the right decision is to stay in.

“I think by his honesty about his position, which is that he has had qualms in the past, I think he is actually speaking to a lot of people in the country about where they are.”

Mr Miliband added: “There is a remarkable unity of purpose in the Labour party, 95% of Labour MPs, every Labour leader, every major trade union (back Remain).”