Liz Truss Resigns As UK Prime Minister After Tax-Cut Plan Backfires
After a brief and turbulent term as prime minister of the UK, Liz Truss announced a big package of unfunded tax cuts before largely rolling most of them back in the face of a market crash.
Truss, 47, left her position after only 45 days in office, being history’s shortest-serving British prime minister. She assumed office in early September with promises of a full-court press for growth, but the financial markets found her programme intolerable as the value of the pound and gilts plummeted due to worries about how she would finance her economic goals.
After 12 and a half years in power, her departure severely damages the current Conservative Party, which is currently polling more than 30 points behind Labour. In fewer than seven years since the 2016 Brexit referendum, which ushered in an era of unprecedented upheaval in British politics, her successor will become the party’s fifth premier.
Truss stated that she will continue serving as prime minister until the party selects her replacement, which is expected to happen within a week.
Regardless of who it is, they will have a difficult job rebuilding the Tory party’s economy and reputation in time for the mandatory general election in January 2025. After Brexit, Truss’s position is practically assured. In the near future, Britain will face increasing borrowing rates, slow growth, and tax hikes and spending cuts.
“It’s a shambles and a disgrace,” veteran Tory MP Charles Walker told the BBC on Oct. 19. “The damage they have done to our party is extraordinary.”
Chancellor of the Exchequer Jeremy Hunt, who was recently promoted from the back benches after Truss fired Kwasi Kwarteng in an effort to calm the markets, and former Chancellor Rishi Sunak, who finished second to Truss in this summer’s leadership election, are likely candidates for the top position. It’s also likely that Tom Tugendhat, Penny Mordaunt, and Kemi Badenoch will be in the running this summer. Suella Braverman, the former home secretary who was fired on October 19, might potentially be considered.
Truss’ lack of political sense and understanding of economic reality ultimately proved to be his downfall.
The ultimate humiliation occurred on Wednesday night as the beleaguered prime leader attempted to herd her furious MPs into the House of Commons voting lobbies for a vote that could have made or broken her government. Braverman’s dismissal earlier that day for a security violation for which she ordinarily would have received only a warning had already alienated a significant portion of the party’s right wing.
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