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LONDON – Liz Truss, the new leader of Britain’s Conservative Party, has been Foreign Secretary for the past 12 months. He will be formally appointed as the next prime minister by Queen Elizabeth on Tuesday afternoon.
“I will deliver a bold plan to cut taxes and grow our economy,” Truss said in his victory speech, adding that he would take challenges from high energy bills to the National Health Service.
The decision followed a nationwide poll of grassroots members of the party that lasted several weeks this summer. Truss will become the country’s fourth leader in a politically tumultuous six-year period.
10 Downing Street is only the third time in history that a woman has taken over, but it is also the third time in recent years that there has been a change of Prime Minister without a national general election.
“We will deliver, we will deliver, we will deliver,” Truss said, echoing a key campaign theme. “We will give the Conservatives a big win in 2024” – when the next national elections are held.
Dress changes Boris Johnson, has been dragged down by a series of high-profile scandals in the first half of the year. After losing the support of his majority of Conservative legislators and many of his own ministers, he was forced to resign.
Truss spent the summer campaigning against former UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak, a rival for the Conservative leadership. The contest was decided by the votes of approximately 142,000 party members. Truss received more than 81,000 of those votes, the lowest percentage of any president in recent history.
Johnson has continued to serve as caretaker leader for the past few months and is expected to meet the monarch in Scotland on Tuesday to hand in his official resignation.
As the new leader, Truss will make a statement outside 10 Downing Street later on Tuesday. He will immediately face responsibility for Britain’s rapidly escalating energy crisis, with consumers and businesses facing higher gas and electricity costs due to the war in Ukraine and rising inflation threatening the country. A great depression.
Already dubbed a “PM in waiting” by a British newspaper, Truss said in an interview with the BBC this weekend that he would draw up plans to combat the economic challenge within days and aimed to “act immediately”.
Earlier Leadership competition, Truss did not enjoy as much support among fellow Conservative legislators as his opponent Sunak. Although Sunak has pledged to support the new government even if he is not the leader, political analysts have said Truss, who enjoys a sizeable majority in the country’s parliament, will find it difficult to unite his divided conservatives — thankfully, ironically. Johnson’s great success as a campaigner during the last national elections.
In the announcement, party co-chairman Andrew Stevenson said the long, drawn-out contest this summer — involving two “fantastic” candidates with hundreds of questions from tens of thousands of members — showed the party “is in good shape.” voice and good strength.” He received a standing ovation as he thanked Johnson for “rising up to the challenge” throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and recent conflicts in Ukraine. Truss thanked Johnson, describing him as a friend “admired from Kiev to Carlisle.”
Before announcing the result, Sir Graham Brady, who oversees the group of Conservative MPs responsible for electing the new leader, said the vote had been “free and fair”, thanked party members and all candidates, and that both Truss and Sunak had run “excellent” and “excellent campaigns”.
“Friend of animals everywhere. Devoted analyst. Total alcohol scholar. Infuriatingly humble food trailblazer.”