Newly-elected Labour leader Ed Miliband has insisted that he would be "my own man" amid Tory claims his union backing would push the party to the left.
In his first interview since the vote, the new Leader of the Opposition played down union bosses' post-result claims that their man had been elected.
"I am nobody's man, I am my own man. I am very clear about that," he said.
He said he believed strike action "always have to be a last resort" and insisted that the unions were showing a "sense of responsibility" over the need for public spending cuts.
Mr Miliband revealed that he had enjoyed a "brief chat" with his brother but that it was too early to know whether David would play any role in his shadow cabinet.
"He has shown extraordinary generosity and graciousness to me both in public and in private and he now wants me to get on with the job of leading the party."
Amid speculation he could make his older sibling shadow chancellor, he said: "He needs time to think about the contribution he can make. I think he can make a very big contribution to British politics.
He pointed out that he received more individual votes in the contest than any of his rivals and defended his high proportion of support from the unions.