Blairite MP Douglas Alexander was accused today of turning on the poor after saying that Labour needs to say more about how it would cut the government's budget deficit.
The shadow foreign secretary told the Guardian that he backed comments by shadow chancellor Ed Balls that Labour would continue public-sector pay freezes and cut more spending after the 2015 election.
Mr Alexander also reiterated his support for a cap on benefits and said his party needed to adopt austerity.
"We cannot promise now to reverse every Tory cut," he said. "Not least because we do not know the state of public finances in 2015."
But his comments were at odds with shadow work and pensions secretary Liam Byrne, who announced today that Labour would oppose the coalition's plan for a national cap on household benefits.
And Labour MP Jeremy Corbyn said: "What the party needs to do is support an economic policy that doesn't increase levels of poverty and unemployment, which seems to be where Mr Alexander's stance will leave us.
"We have to offer a radical alternative of increasing public investment and spending that help the majority not a minority.
"The time of this debate is to put the new Labour project well and truly behind us and recover the damage it did to the economy."