“If it meant we weren’t going to be in government, not doing a coalition, not doing a deal, then so be it,” Miliband said in a live BBC Question Time election special. “I am not going to have a Labour government if it means deals or coalitions with the Scottish National Party.”
Miliband’s comments came one day after an Ipsos-MORI poll in Scotland predicted the SNP would win all 59 seats north of the border, and just one week ahead of a General Election in which all polls point to neither major party claiming a majority.
Miliband faced tough questions from the Question Time audience, which the BBC said was made up of one quarter each Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrat voters. The remaining 25 per cent were comprised of undecided voters and people backing other parties.
The Labour leader was grilled on his party’s economic record, with multiple audience members asking whether he thought the previous Labour government spent too much.
“No I don’t,” Miliband said.
Prime Minister David Cameron and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg also participated in the election special, in which each party leader was questioned separately for 30 minutes. The audience pressed Cameron to provide details on the Conservatives’ plans for welfare cuts in the next government, and attacked Clegg for the Liberal Democrats’ about-turn on student tuition fees in 2010. But it was Cameron who won the last TV contest of the campaign, according to a Guardian/ICM poll conducted late last night. It found 44 per cent of viewers said the Tory leader had performed best, while 38 per cent backed Miliband and 19 per cent were in favour of Clegg. But only six per cent said their voting intention had changed following the TV event.
Visit our General Election poll tracker to see how the polls changed in the build-up to election day.