Philip Hammond slams Rees-Mogg claims of £80million no-deal boost to the economy

PUBLISHED: 11:39 17 July 2019 | UPDATED: 11:50 17 July 2019

Jacob Rees-Mogg, pictured in 2013. Picture: Colin McPherson/Corbis via Getty Images

Jacob Rees-Mogg, pictured in 2013. Picture: Colin McPherson/Corbis via Getty Images

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The chancellor has said that it's "terrifying" that Jacob Rees-Mogg is close to being in government when he claims the UK will be millions better off after a no-deal Brexit.

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Hammond hit back in a tweet against the arch-Brexiteer's claims, which were made in a Telegraph opinion piece.

The piece said that Hammond's sober view of no deal was "pure silliness", rubbishing his ongoing warnings that it would cost the UK economy £90 billion. On the contrary, said Rees-Mogg, the treasury is unnecessarily pessimistic.

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"Happy to debate scale of negative impact of no deal on the economy," said Hammond in the tweet. "But terrifying that someone this close to a potential future government can think we'd actually be better off by adding barriers to access to our largest market."

Rees-Mogg disputed numerous treasury calculations in his article, concluding: "Put simply, the idea that we will be poorer in the long-term and even in the short-term after Brexit is a myth."

Hammond has opposed Johnson's willingness to contemplate a no-deal Brexit and is unlikely to be reappointed if the front-runner wins the leadership race. He has become increasingly distanced from hard eurosceptic views and has even hinted he would be willing to vote with the opposition against a no-deal Brexit.

WATCH: Hammond says he will be a 'nightmare' to Boris Johnson over no-deal Brexit

WATCH: Philip Hammond hints he might vote with Labour against a no-deal Brexit

Meanwhile Rees-Mogg, currently a backbencher, is a Johnson supporter and is one of several said to be angling for the chancellor's post in the cabinet reshuffle that will follow the appointment of a new prime minister. His article is likely to be read as a jobs pitch to Johnson, who has called for more optimism around Brexit.

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