McDonnell accuses PM of ‘pork-barrel’ politics with Brexit ‘bribery’

Shadow chancellor criticises May over reports she pledged extra cash for leave-voting areas if MPs back Brexit deal

John McDonnell has criticised Theresa May’s rumoured approach to persuading Labour MPs to vote for her Brexit deal as “pork-barrel” politics, saying: “If there is money there to spend on our constituencies, it should be done anyway.”

The shadow chancellor’s accusation follows reports that the government is preparing to plough extra funding into deprived areas that supported leave, with the Nottinghamshire MP John Mann claiming that a set of job-creation measures targeted at former industrial towns would make it “very difficult for Labour MPs in leave areas to vote against the deal unless they want a second referendum”.

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