Sunday Times stoop to new low with poll asking if Ed Miliband is “too ugly”

Sunday Times stoop to new low with poll asking if Ed Miliband is "too ugly". Disappointing for his detractors, only one in ten agreed with the idea.


The media hate campaign against Ed Miliband took a new low today as the Sunday Times commissioned a respected polling company to ask the public whether he was “too ugly” to be prime minister.

On Tuesday, John Humphrys was widely criticised for implying that Ed Miliband’s was “too ugly” to win an election during a Today programme interview with the Labour leader.

The Telegraph and Mail both described it as a “gaffe” while The Guardian’s media reporter Dan Sabbagh said Humphrys had “comprehensively lost his way” and that the “outrage would have lasted all day” if Miliband had been a woman.

Despite the backlash, the Sunday Times have stoked the fire by getting YouGov to ask the same question.

Disappointingly for Mr Miliband’s detractors, the paper reports (£):

Only one in 10 believes he is “too ugly”.

Tory MP, Louise Mensch, is among those to question the judgment of both newspaper and polling agency, and tweeted:

“Pity that a reputable polling firm agreed to ask the question, honestly.”

There’s a legitimate discussion to be had about leadership but we’re in trouble if the British media think personal appearance is fair game.

See also:

“Nothing wrong” with the PCC code, thinks the head of the PCCAlex Hern, November 14th 2011

Sunday Times Editor: Newspapers take the PCC “very seriously” – Really???Shamik Das, November 1st 2011

Rupert “page three” Murdoch’s ‘papal knighthood’ shames Catholic churchDaniel Elton, July 14th 2011

The revolving door between News International and No. 10Liam R Thompson, October 28th 2010

Murdoch press’s inaccuracies and half truths about Ed MilibandWill Straw, September 26th 2010

25 Responses to “Sunday Times stoop to new low with poll asking if Ed Miliband is “too ugly””

  1. Anonymous

    I note that John Humphreys writes for YouGov. That’s interesting, isn’t it?

  2. Tristan Price-Williams

    I take the point that it’s hardly politically correct to ask that kind of question, and that the balloon would have gone up had it been a woman… but I do remember that one of the points oft quoted in in Tony Blair’s favour was his attractiveness, and against Michael Foot was the fact that he was scruffy, old and ugly.

    No one can deny that looks matter. People spend hours looking at and discussing the good looks of everyone from Kate Middleton and William, to Peter Andre and Jordan and whoever she’s married to this week. Looks, looks, looks. I wish it were not so. It puts a shelf like on even attractive people, but let’s be honest, it is.

    Even at the bottom, the good looking guy or girl is going to persuade the interviewer that he’s or she’s the right person for the job selling phones, serving lattes or on reception over the fat ugly kid with spots.

    Humphries was just putting it into words. Not politically correct but realistic.

    I don’t think, incidentally, that Miliband is ugly. But I think he lacks charisma (or telecharisma) and he lacks any kind of force, when he attacks in parliament.

    What he is saying is right. They hurt the poor to help the rich. Robin Hood in reverse… but somehow he can’t get it across. And the odious policies of Cameron (who also in no oil painting, with his podgy face and thinning hair) go almost untouched.

    Imagine being neck and neck after all that Cameron has done to us. You have to find someone new.

  3. Ed's Talking Balls

    Have to agree: the cretinisation of politics continues apace, it seems.

    The reason Miliband is not suited to lead even a conga line is because he is weak and bereft of ideas. Whether he is ugly or not shouldn’t (and, given the above, needn’t) come into it.

  4. Mike Nolan

    He is a shareholder in the company.

  5. Blarg1987

    I think people should complain to the Sunday Tomes saying that are they implying thegeneral public are thick and shallow that we go for the best looking person rather then the policies they represent.

    Maybe I am a one off, but whenever I see a good looking person trying to sell something to me I think to myself what are they hiding and or trying not to show, the media should focus more on policies then looks otherwise will politics of the future be represented by people from Mde in Chelsea and TOWIE and any other so called real life drama. This would be a scary slope but if everyone throughout history was judged on looks we wouldn;t have half the science and technologies we use day to day.

    Miliband has to be smarter, yes he has to get his policies out but he has to be more assertive and more challanging of the media who ask of his policies if I was to ansewer the question with regards to john humphries I would have turned it on its head and said are you implying the british puplic are shallow individuals with that comment, carefully worded but assertive enough to show strong leadership and by also not caring what the media says and get on with the job is two ways he can improve his chances.

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