Ed Miliband has a safer position in Doncaster North than polling last week suggested. Photo: Flickr/Fabian Society
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Ed Miliband's seat looks far safer than we thought, after a polling correction

It's far more likely the Labour leader will keep his constituency, Doncaster North, than was suggested last week.

Last week, a batch of Lord Ashcroft's marginal polling caused quite a stir with its analysis of Ed Miliband's seat, Doncaster North.

We learnt that Miliband was 12 points ahead in his seat (compared to 26 in 2010), with Ukip in second place. This was a revelation that led to Nigel Farage's party pointing out that they could defeat the Labour leader if Tory voters supported them tactically.

However, the Tory peer and pollster has issued a correction to this poll today, which shows Miliband actually has a very safe lead in his seat: 29 points ahead of Ukip.

Here are the facts:

 - Labour leads Ukip by 29 points in Doncaster North

 - Voters in Doncaster North put Miliband 14 points ahead of David Cameron in the "best Prime Minister" question

 - Doncaster North constituents give Miliband the highest ratings out of the four main party leaders

 - They trust Miliband and Ed Balls more on the economy than they do Cameron and George Osborne

Anoosh Chakelian is deputy web editor at the New Statesman.

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Is anyone prepared to solve the NHS funding crisis?

As long as the political taboo on raising taxes endures, the service will be in financial peril. 

It has long been clear that the NHS is in financial ill-health. But today's figures, conveniently delayed until after the Conservative conference, are still stunningly bad. The service ran a deficit of £930m between April and June (greater than the £820m recorded for the whole of the 2014/15 financial year) and is on course for a shortfall of at least £2bn this year - its worst position for a generation. 

Though often described as having been shielded from austerity, owing to its ring-fenced budget, the NHS is enduring the toughest spending settlement in its history. Since 1950, health spending has grown at an average annual rate of 4 per cent, but over the last parliament it rose by just 0.5 per cent. An ageing population, rising treatment costs and the social care crisis all mean that the NHS has to run merely to stand still. The Tories have pledged to provide £10bn more for the service but this still leaves £20bn of efficiency savings required. 

Speculation is now turning to whether George Osborne will provide an emergency injection of funds in the Autumn Statement on 25 November. But the long-term question is whether anyone is prepared to offer a sustainable solution to the crisis. Health experts argue that only a rise in general taxation (income tax, VAT, national insurance), patient charges or a hypothecated "health tax" will secure the future of a universal, high-quality service. But the political taboo against increasing taxes on all but the richest means no politician has ventured into this territory. Shadow health secretary Heidi Alexander has today called for the government to "find money urgently to get through the coming winter months". But the bigger question is whether, under Jeremy Corbyn, Labour is prepared to go beyond sticking-plaster solutions. 

George Eaton is political editor of the New Statesman.