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Corbyn's former economics adviser calls him a 'pro-Brexit buffoon'

Tom Belger
Finance and policy reporter
Jeremy Corbyn speaking during the 2019 National Manufacturing Conference. Photo: Dinendra Haria/SOPA Images/Sipa USA

A former economic adviser to Jeremy Corbyn has launched an extraordinary personal attack on the Labour leader, calling him a “pro-Brexit buffoon” who was “clueless” about economics.

Danny Blanchflower, who served on the Bank of England’s monetary policy committee during the financial crisis, joined other leading left-leaning economists on an advisory group after Corbyn gained power.

But he has since distanced himself from the leader of the UK opposition, and now urging voters not to support Corbyn over his stance on Brexit in the upcoming European elections.

In a series of furious tweets over the past few days, Blanchflower called Corbyn an “uneducated fool” and accused him of being “clueless” about economics.

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He said: “I supported Labour my whole life but could never vote for them with a pro-Brexit buffoon as leader.

“In Scotland Remainers should vote for the SNP, and certainly not for Labour or the awful Scottish Tories, either of who have anything to offer – sad that I have had to say this but pro-Brexit Jeremy Corbyn is a disaster.

“The possibility of Brexit has slowed GDP and hit the pound. I sit from afar watching the world being astonished at the utter incompetence of UK politicians – Labour should be a real alternative but is just a laughing stock due to the non-leadership of utterly useless Corbyn sadly.”

He claimed he was told once during a BBC interview that Corbyn had announced plans to cap the pay of CEOS bidding for government contracts, having heard “nothing” about the plans before going on air. “They scrapped it two hours later after I said it was bloody idiotic,” he tweeted.

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Simon Wren-Lewis, an economics professor also previously on Corbyn’s economic advisory council (EAC), also spoke out against him this week, albeit in more moderate terms.

He said that Labour had taken up his advice on setting fiscal rules, but “didn’t appear to listen on our warnings about Brexit.”

He added: “It was Brexit, and the Labour leader's lackluster campaign and too eager adoption of it, that broke up the EAC.

“If it hadn't been for that I think the organisation would have improved and there would be plenty of policies to discuss.”

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