Labour is winning the economic argument, Ed Balls claimed today, amid stinging criticism of his Commons performance in the wake of George Osborne's Autumn Statement.
The shadow chancellor said the massed ranks of Tory MPs were always going to try to shout down his message and claimed many people have congratulated him on his performance.
And he said he "couldn't give a toss" about speculation in newspapers and by bookmakers about his chances of staying in the job, insisting he had "never been less bothered" about "gossip and tittle tattle" about his performance in a 20-year career.
Mr Balls told the Sky News Murnaghan programme Labour had answers for real people, not just those in the Westminster bubble.
He said: "(We have) a really strong economic argument and that's why 300 Tory MPs were going to shout really loudly from the very beginning.
"I decided I was going to take the argument back to them and say no, there is not a recovery for most working people, living standards are falling.
"What happened the next day? The Institute of Fiscal Studies effectively confirmed the Chancellor is out of touch saying living standards are going up because for most people, they are going down - I think we are winning the argument."
The shadow chancellor questioned why David Cameron and Mr Osborne were laughing on the front bench as he made his case on Thursday, and added: "I have had people coming to me and saying, keep up the fight, because we need a Labour government because we're getting worse off."
And when challenged on people making judgments on his performance and questioning his future, he added: "I'm not complaining at all - what I want to talk about is what is happening in our country.
"The Daily Mail would love me and Ed Miliband out because they want to keep in an out-of-touch Tory Government which is cutting tax at the top.
"That's the nature of politics ... they're betting on David Cameron and George Osborne and Ed Miliband. It's just the way it is ... frankly, I couldn't give a toss."
The former Labour leadership contender said he was not in denial about the role his party played in the 2008 financial crisis, arguing he had taken account for mistakes made - and insisting there was cross-party support for the big economic arguments in 2006.
Mr Balls said: "Every government gets some things right but doesn't do everything right. We were completely right, in my view, to make the Bank independent, have a national minimum wage, not to join the single currency, to get our national debt down, to invest in the National Health Service.
"We did many good things - we should have been tougher on the banks. Should there have been a decision in 2006 to raise interest rates by the Bank of England? I don't know the answer to that, we don't know the extent to which there was an unsustainable housing boom taking off at that point because the global financial crisis knocked it.
"We had a very small deficit on the current account, we had national debt which was low and stable ... I'm not going to apologise the Labour government spent too much on the NHS.
"Do I think we spent every pound wisely? Of course not - but this is the point. When the deficit went up so much, if we had known in advance that was going to happen, would we have decided to raise taxes or cut spending? No, we would have decided to intervene in the banking world to stop that financial crisis happening in the first place.
"That's why I go back to the big mistake of that period."