Jeremy Corbyn is a “Marxist” and “extremely dangerous” for the country, a Cabinet minister said as his own Government sought to reach a Brexit deal with the Labour leader.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock’s comments followed similar attacks from Tory MPs furious that Theresa May has begun holding talks with Mr Corbyn to seek a Brexit compromise.
As senior Tory and Labour figures continued meetings on Thursday, Mr Hancock’s comments are unlikely to improve relations between the two sides.
The Health Secretary said: “I profoundly disagree with Jeremy Corbyn on the economy. He is a Marxist and he would do profound damage to people’s livelihoods.”
Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Mr Hancock continued: “He is also extremely dangerous on security matters.
“He, nevertheless though, stood on a manifesto on Brexit to deliver Brexit, and that is also what we want to do.”
His comments are the latest in a series of vicious attacks by Tories on Mr Corbyn as the Government seeks a deal.
Nigel Adams, who quit as a minister on Wednesday, used his resignation letter to describe Mr Corbyn as a “Marxist who has never once in his political life, put British interests first”.
At Prime Minister’s Questions, Mrs May was asked by former Cabinet minister David Jones if it remained the position of the Government that the Leader of the Opposition is “not fit to govern”.
And Caroline Johnson asked Mrs May: “If it comes to the point when we have to balance the risk of a no-deal Brexit versus the risk of letting down the country and ushering in a Marxist, anti-Semite-led government, what does she think at this point is the lowest risk?”
Asked following PMQs if Mr Corbyn was a Marxist, a Labour spokesman said: “I think Jeremy was asked that question by Andrew Marr in the first leadership election, and I think he said something like ‘Marx was an interesting analyst of capitalism of his time and going forward’.”