The millionaire Tory Chancellor has claimed there are no unemployed people in a spectacular live TV gaffe.
Philip Hammond made the car-crash comment, despite official figures showing 1.425million out of work, in the middle of his biggest interview ahead of this week’s Budget which could make or break his career.
His last Budget in the Spring was a shambles after he had to abandon tax hikes for a self-employed. And he is battling for his job after clashing with pro-Brexit Cabinet colleagues.
Either we embrace change and we put ourselves at the forefront of it or we try to hide from change and we allow ourselves to slip behind.
He added: I remember 20 years ago we were worrying about what was going to happen to the million shorthand typists in Britain as the personal computer took over.
Well, nobody has a shorthand typist these days. Where are all these unemployed people? There are no unemployed people. A surprised Mr Marr said there were lots of unemployed people.
But the Chancellor pressed on: We’ve created 3.5million new jobs since 2010. This economy has become a jobs factory, constantly reinventing itself, constantly creating new jobs and careers.
He later backtracked on his gaffe insisting the 1.4million unemployed people haven’t been forgotten by this government but unemployment is at record lows.
He added: “It was the last Labour government that abandoned the unemployed, ignored them, dumped them on welfare.
But Shadow Cabinet Office minister Jon Trickett said: The Chancellor is living on another planet.
Mr Hammond was already fighting for his job; Theresa May only kept him in the Treasury because she failed to win a general election landslide.
He used a separate interview to deny he is an Eeyore, the nickname given to him by Brexit backing Tories because of his gloomy statements around the looming EU exit.