When you sit down to watch Ed Miliband’s speech at 2:15pm you may find that all of a sudden a funny feeling comes across you – the feeling that you’ve heard these very lines before. You wouldn’t be wrong.
This afternoon Ed will tell the Manchester conference hall: “My family hasn’t sat under the same oak tree for the last five hundred years. My parents came to Britain as immigrants, Jewish refugees from the Nazis”. Almost word-for-word identical to an article he wrote for the Telegraph in June: “My family have not sat under the same oak tree for the last 500 years. My parents were Jewish refugees from the Nazis”.
Always looking out for the little guy, Ed will give us an anecdote about unemployment today: “The young woman I met earlier this year at a youth centre in London. She had hope and ambition, she bubbled with talk about her future, she had sent off 137 CVs but not even had a reply to any of them”. The very same anecdote he used in a speech on jobs in March: “Like the young woman I met recently at a youth centre in London. She had sent off 137 CVs, and hadn’t got a single reply”.
Ed’s also going to tell us all about his favourite teacher today: “I still remember the motivation, the inspiration from some amazing teaching. It was a tough school, but one with order, because of the scariest headmistress you can imagine, Mrs Jenkins”. Just like he did in a party political broadcast in April: “We had an incredibly tough, incredibly charismatic headteacher at my school… nobody messed with Mrs Jenkins”.
And what about small business? This afternoon Ed will say: “The small businessman I met in July, Alan Henderson, proud of the sign-making business he built up over 40 years. Alan was ripped off by the bank he had been with all that time and has been living through a nightmare ever since”. The same Alan Henderson Ed talked about during a banking speech in July: “Last Thursday when I visited Alan Henderson. Alan, his wife Margaret and his daughter, Julie, run a sign-making company in Putney…a four year nightmare which has undermined the family business and still does today”.
Finally we have Ed’s famous comprehensive school education. Today he will insist: “I know I would not be standing here today as leader of the Labour Party without my comprehensive school education”. Just like he did in April: “I would never being doing the job I was doing if I hadn’t gone to the kind of school I went to”.
Turns out when it comes to Ed, we really have heard it all before…