Ed Miliband 'not leading the pack' in his line of attack on News International

Ed Miliband's line of attack on News International and the Government will not excite the general public, a selection of public affairs operators have concluded.

Ed Miliband: line of attack on News International criticised
Ed Miliband: line of attack on News International criticised
The leader of the Labour Party gave a speech this morning in which he called for the Press Complaints Commission to be scrapped in the wake of the phone hacking scandal at the News of World.

He said the PCC is ‘a toothless poodle’ and a new body with ‘proper investigative powers’ was needed.

The Labour leader added that David Cameron had made ‘an appalling error of judgment’ in employing former News of the World editor Andy Coulson as his director of comms and should apologise for having done so.

Westminster University visiting professor of public relations Trevor Morris said ‘this could have been a strong card for Miliband if he had got on to it much sooner’.

‘Now he is at best just up with the pack. He is certainly not leading it. To get any real cut through he needs to take a distinct position and he may just have found that with his attack on the PCC. It won't particularly excite the general population but it might at least create some profile and distinction for him amongst the political and media classes.'

Freelance public affairs consultant Lionel Zetter said that while Labour's outrage is ‘undoubtedly genuine’, he questioned the degree to which it is fuelled by News International’s decision to abandon New Labour and support the Tories.

Bell Pottinger Public Affairs chairman Peter Bingle said: ‘Ed Miliband's mistake when the story first broke was to focus on Rebekah Brooks, whom nobody outside the Westminster Village has ever heard of.

‘His strategy should be to focus solely on Andy Coulson and link him directly to the Prime Minister. Is he playing politics with the issue? Of course he is. That is his job. On the PCC he is simply wrong. Self-regulation of the press must not be the victim of the hacking crisis.’

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