Theresa May ally accuses Hammond of vetoing policies promoting 'economic justice' – Politics live

Rolling coverage of the day’s political developments as they happen, including MPs debating and voting on the first day of the EU withdrawal bill’s committee stage

Today will be dominated by Brexit. The EU withdrawal bill enters its committee stage in the Commons, the government’s attempt to appease Tory pro-Europeans by agreeing to implement the final Brexit deal in the form of an act of parliament has not impressed potential rebels, and MPs will spend eight hours debating and voting on amendments to the bill. But more of that later ….

First, with the budget only eight days away, one of Theresa May’s closest allies has launched a withering attack on Philip Hammond, the chancellor, in a column in the Sun. Nick Timothy is not in government, and technically he is just an outside observer. But Timothy spent more than seven years working as an adviser to May and, more than anyone else, he is credited with shaping her political thinking. He was May’s co chief of staff inDowning Street until he left in June after the election.

We should assess the chancellor’s own economic literacy — because, after more than a year at the Treasury, his economic policy remains unclear.

He likes to think of himself as “Fiscal Phil”, the guy who balances the country’s books. But the public finances are only one part of the chancellor’s job.

[Hammond] says he wants to prevent the return of socialism, as proposed by Jeremy Corbyn, but he stops any proposals that would improve economic justice.

He blocks any serious measures that curb excessive corporate pay. He opposes policies to improve the way companies are run. And he is against any kind of worker representation in corporate decision-making.

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