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Labour needs to convince its traditional voters it “likes” them, the party’s Welsh leader has warned.

In an exclusive Mirror interview, First Minister Mark Drakeford feared long-time Labour supporters in the Red Wall of the North and Midlands had been “taken for granted” – leading to the 2019 Tory landslide.

Insisting he did not want to “lecture” the London-based party, he said: “I never myself approach this in the sense of thinking we have got lessons to teach anybody else.

“What I’m always happy to do is to share our experience in case that is useful to anybody else.”

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He added: “Having said I’m not telling other people what to do, there have been too many occasions in some parts of the country where the Labour Party doesn’t appear to like people who vote Labour.

Labour’s leader in Wales Mark Drakeford was interviewed by the Daily Mirror’s Deputy Political Editor, Ben Glaze ( Humphrey Nemar)

“In Wales, we are hugely proud to represent people.

“The identification between the party and the people who vote for us is very strong, and we are hugely proud of the people who vote Labour.

“I think sometimes in other parts it has been a bit of a sense that we are not all that keen on the people who vote for us.

“If you look at some of the so-called ‘Red Wall’ things, in some parts of the country people believe that while they voted Labour, Labour didn’t take the interest in them that we should have done – taken them for granted.”

Pointing to the “ingredients in Welsh Labour’s success”, he highlighted “unity” and “hard work”.

He said: “Unified parties win elections and we have generally been very lucky to have that sense of unity.

Mr Drakeford admits his job is easier than Keir Starmer’s ( Getty)

“Perspiration is more important than inspiration – hard work, I think that’s another characteristic of the Labour Party in Wales.”

He believed being to demonstrate success through wielding power offered him an advantage unavailable to Keir Starmer.

“We have had 20 years of being in power so if we say we are going to do something – this is where my job has been much easier than Keir’s in many ways,” said the First Minister.

“He’s always just having to tell people what Labour would do, whereas I am always able to say, ‘Look at what Labour has done’.”

He believed some loyal voters had been taken for granted ( Humphrey Nemar)

Mr Drakeford also claimed the party’s success in Wales made his job easier than Mr Starmer’s.

“We have it easy in the sense that the basic predisposition of people in Wales to believe in the sorts of things the Labour Party stands for means it’s an easier job to sell the Labour Party in Wales than is it in some other parts of the country,” he said.

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