The Labour Party’s biggest donor has expressed his doubt about Ed Miliband winning a majority at next year’s General Election. John Mills told an audience that there is a less than one-in-three chance that Labour will win the next election with an overall majority in the House of Commons.
The millionaire businessman blamed this on the Labour leader’s inability to come up with a ‘powerful unifying theme’ for the 2015 election, according to the Daily Mail.
In a further blow to Miliband, Mr Mills also suggested that the Conservative Party were the best option if people want a referendum on Britain’s EU membership, despite Labour’s pledge to hold a referendum if a major change to the EU treaties is proposed.
Speaking at an event called “The EU, Britain’s Past? Britain’s Future?”, hosted by University College London, he said that Labour’s chances of an outright victory next year were between 25 and 30 percent, and attacked the party’s adoption if the slogan ‘One Nation Labour’.
“It hasn’t actually been developed as a very powerful unifying theme, One Nation,” Mr Mills said.
Although he supports the Labour Party, Mr Mills is also strongly Eurosceptic, and has previously called for the party to support a referendum on Britain’s membership of the European Union.
During his speech, however, he conceded that the Conservatives are the best option for an EU referendum. He said that the only way Labour would offer a referendum, without treaty change first being proposed, would be “that Euroscepticism just grows during a relative unsuccessful Labour government.”
He even appeared to suggest that Ed Miliband does not want a referendum whatever happens, and may renege on his pledge: “The Labour leader, the Labour leadership, was calculating that there won’t be any treaty change between now and 2020 so if there is a majority Labour government, there won’t need to be a referendum.”
He added: “I think he stood back from the issue of timing, he could say well it’s not the right time, but sooner or later the credibility of politicians is going to crack.”
Recent polls have showed a narrowing of Labour’s lead over the Conservatives, with some putting them just one point ahead. More and more pundits and pollsters are predicting that the next election will result in another hung parliament, with neither main party winning a majority.