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This Is What The Students Stuck Outside Ed Miliband’s Speech Think About Ed Miliband

They have some advice for the Labour leader.

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Ed Miliband delivered a speech today at the University of Warwick, where he spoke about abolishing the "non-dom tax".

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The rule is a loophole that applies to wealthy individuals who live in the UK but can avoid paying tax on money they earn outside the country.

Only a few select members of the Warwick Labour society were let in. The rest of the student population was neither invited to attend nor even informed about it.

The Warwick students had to stand by and watch as he walked straight past them.

Which was a problem because these students have some opinions on, and advice for, Ed Miliband.

This guy, Sam Horn, is a final-year engineering student and said "the fact that he [Miliband]'s scared to talk to students does not work in his favour."

He was escorted out of the hall by police after he tried to get in.

On campus, Warwick is known for being a fairly left-leaning university, according to Sam. "I think it should be his playground, and he shouldn't be scared of playing in his playground," he added.

Sam typically has access to the building but refused entry today by an "extremely rude" member of the security team.

"The Miliband talk took place in a research institute, and I tried to go and hear what he had to say but the security people were not very welcoming," he told BuzzFeed News.

Simon Kanani said Miliband is the right choice as leader of the party. "People are over the fact that he's unpresentable, that's old news," he said.

Siraj Datoo / BuzzFeed News

Simon, a final year economics and politics student, plans to vote Labour because he believes the party's policies most align with his views. And he thinks it's "quite a big deal" that the man who might be prime minister after May's election came to visit their university.

"Everyone knows he can't eat a bacon sandwich, everyone knows why he was staring down the camera [referring to the TV debates last week]. He looked like he was going to murder us.

"But Labour in general have very good policies," he added.

He said he wants Labour to talk more about what the party is going to do for young people.

"I want to know what he's going to do for us," he said. As a final-year student looking for a job in the capital, he's worried about high rent prices.

"I've been looking at rent recently and it's ridiculously. No-one can afford it. I have to live so far out of London that it'll practically cost me the same to get into London every day," Simon said.


Ryan Watts, 21, said he wanted Miliband to be more confident and bold in the TV debates.

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"I'd like [Labour] to be more confident in backing themselves because after Farage's comments about HIV and health tourism, he only responded to that on Twitter after the debate after the debate."

"Everyone should have said something [against the comments]," he added.

He suggested Labour held the event in the International Digital Laboratory because not all students have access to the building.

"There's a lot of people here, I'd be more of a fan of him if he came out, addressed us and told us what he was doing."

But Ryan said he liked Miliband because he felt "less polished" than David Cameron.

"i think Ii can relate to his social awkwardness. He does seem to be more of an every man." He added that it was "kind of endearing" that Miliband failed to correctly ask, "Am I tough enough?" during his interview with Jeremy Paxman.

Jack Mercer said he doesn't understand why Labour is offering different tuition fees for Scottish voters and the rest of the UK.

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Jack, a history of French student, waited over two hours to meet Miliband but didn't get the opportunity. For him, tuition fees is a sticking point.

"I don't understand why Labour in Scotland offer no tuition fees like Jim Murphy said two days ago, but Labour in England can only offer £6,000," Jack, the undecided voter, said.

"I don't understand why if the Labour party is said to be one party of the United Kingdom, why are English students not offered the same as what Scottish students are. Are we not as important to the vote?"

He wasn't impressed that he hadn't been invited to the speech, either: "I don't understand why we haven't been invited. At the end of the day we pay for these buildings."

"You'd think £9,000 tuition fees would get us something," he said.

Meanwhile Alex Manning was highly unimpressed with the BBC's coverage of the event.

Siraj Datoo / BuzzFeed News

"They branded it as Coventry. This is technically a Coventry postcode but it's a university campus on the outskirts on Coventry," Alex the undecided voter said.

And Adam Quigley, a Labour supporter, thought Labour's reduction of tuition fees to £6,000 "showed a lack of ambition".

Siraj Datoo / BuzzFeed News

He added that students should have been invited to the event too and Miliband should have come out to speak to them.


Jasmine Desmond, finishing off her PhD, said it would be a "good idea" for the party to talk more about immigration.

Siraj Datoo / BuzzFeed News

"I can see why being able to move around Europe freely is a good thing for my work and for what I've trained to do as a chemistry research student but there's a lot of pressure from other parties about immigration and I want to know how he's going to address that."

"I want to know how they're going to deal with immigration," she said. "Are they just going to carry on?"

She also said she was concerned about the NHS.

This happy looking student was actually not very happy with the Labour leader.

Siraj Datoo / BuzzFeed News

Bartek Dziamski, 21-year-old engineering student, said Miliband "could have made an impact if he spoke to us."

Bartek was a floating voter before the event and he hasn't been encouraged to vote Labour, even though the party leader was on his campus.

Vinay Manektalla, 21, said the Labour leader showed that he was "afraid" of meeting people who didn't agree with him.

Siraj Datoo / BuzzFeed News

He said he was disappointed in the Labour leader: "He came to our university and wasn't even open to speaking with students."

He won't be voting for Labour.

And Akash Syed agreed. "I would have liked him to come and talk to us and get our opinions."

Siraj Datoo / BuzzFeed News

The final year engineering student said MIliband "could have swayed my vote if I could have heard what he had to say.

"Most of what politicians are like is filtered out. It's different seeing them in person."

Siraj Datoo is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Siraj Datoo at

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