Politics

Labour Will Learn From Much-Mocked 'Shrinking Clegg' Election Broadcast, Says Chuka Umunna

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Labour will learn from its much-mocked party election broadcast that made fun of Nick Clegg as the "un-credible shrinking man" and painted David Cameron and the Tories in cabinet as posh boys, Chuka Umunna has said.

During a Q&A at the Blairite think-tank Progress conference in central London, the shadow business secretary was challenged over the advert by a Labour party member who said it made her "sick in my stomach".

Umunna, who appeared to be guarded in his comments as there were "some journalists in the room" said of the broadcast: "some of them work, some of them won't work, shall I just leave it there?"

He added that the party did have to try "new ways" to engage people who had become disaffected from politics, but added: "You live and learn."

The Lib Dems dismissed the broadcast as a "petty attack ad". And it also did not go down too well with several Labour supporting commentators.

Ed Miliband defended the advert when it was broadcast earlier this month as a "light-hearted" attempt to make a "very serious point" about what the coalition government had done. "If we can find new, humorous and imaginative ways of doing that then we will," he said.

The broadcast was also defended by Douglas Alexander, Labour's general election co-ordinator. "I make no apology as a Labour party to say we need to be innovative in the way we seek to present the kind of issues that people face," he told the BBC at the time. “It’s factual; it was a policy-based critique of this government and the Liberal Democrat’s role within that government.”

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