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Labour’s shadow secretary of state for Work and Pensions claims Labour lost the 2010 election because it was not seen as tough enough on welfare.

What: In his 2011 party conference speech, Liam Byrne says: “Let’s face the tough truth – that many people on the doorstep at the last election felt that too often we were for shirkers, not workers.”

Why significant: The main opposition party recites the same rhetoric demonising benefit claimants as used by the government to justify welfare reform.


Liam Byrne –Speech to Labour Party Conference, 2011