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Ed Miliband MP, Leader of the Labour Party, in a speech to the Scottish Labour Conference about how we build a fairer Scotland and a fairer Britain, is expected to challenge:

  • the SNP on who can build a Scotland that works for working people.
  • the Tories, whose answer to the challenges we face is to get back to business as usual 

Ed Miliband is expected to say:

“To do the right thing by the people of Scotland, you owe it to them to have an overriding, single-minded determination.

“A determination to improve the lives, further the chances and rekindle the hopes of ordinary working people in Scotland.

“We must start by answering one call that dwarfs all others.

“Because this is no ordinary time.

“We have an economy not working for the working people of our country.

“Wages not rising for the many, 

“Runaway rewards at the top, 

“Household bills causing monthly heartache.

“And a younger generation asking why its prospects are worse than their parents’. 

“These are not just the injustices of a year or two.

“Not just the failures of one government.

“But the failure of a whole system to work for the many. 

“My case to the people of Scotland is that neither old fashioned Tory politics nor the separatism of the SNP can possibly answer that challenge.

“The Tories because they are wedded to the old ways that got us into the crisis.

“The SNP, because while they award themselves the title of progressive beacon, it is neither what they are doing in practice in government, nor what separatism would bring.”

Ed Miliband, on the failings on the SNP to create a fairer Scotland, will say:

“Last time I was in Scotland, a few weeks ago, I went to the Co op distribution plant in Newhouse. 

“One of the employees there told me that he had always told his children that if they worked hard in school they would get a good job.

“But now that they’re out of school and there are so few jobs, he honestly doesn’t know what to tell them.

“And with 13,000 young people out of work for more than six months, how many parents around this country must feel the same way.

“It is the price of Tory economic failure. It is the price of an approach to the deficit that goes too far and too fast.

“But it is also the price of an SNP government which blame everyone else while leaving even more Scots out of work.

“Alex Salmond came to England to brag about how he would turn Scotland into a progressive beacon. 

“There’s just one problem. He forgot about what he had done in Scotland. When George Osborne handed him the plans to make cuts to capital spending of 11%, he didn’t just make those cuts. 

“He almost doubled them. Thousands of jobs building roads, bridges, and infrastructure ripped out of the economy, not just by the Tories, but by the SNP. 

“He forgot about the people of Scotland when he cut the budget of colleges by a fifth, harming the training chances for young people.”

Ed Miliband is expected to add:

“But throwing up new borders won’t make Scotland fairer:

“If we are going to build an economy that works for working people, we have to do it together. 

“The banks on your high street are the same as the banks on my high street.

“If we are going to reform them, we can only do it with stronger rules together, not weaker rules apart.

“If we are going to create a fairer tax system, we must avoid the race to the bottom on tax rates that separation would import. 

“We’ve got to do it with stronger rules together. And if you want to create a country that is really a progressive beacon, why would you abandon the redistributive union that is the United Kingdom?

“I believe, and I believe that people across the United Kingdom believe, that we owe obligations to each other.

“That the successful Scottish entrepreneur owes obligations to the child born into poverty in London, and the pensioner in Wales.

“Right now, every nation of the UK needs not isolation but solidarity.”

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