‘Cannot Deliver’: Amid Tory Rebellion, Liz Truss Resigns as UK Prime Minister

Chair of the 1922 Committee, Graham Brady, said that it is possible to conduct a leadership contest by 28 October.

4 min read

Video Producer: Pranay Dutta Roy

Video Editor: Purnendu Pritam

United Kingdom Prime Minister Liz Truss on Thursday, 20 October, tendered her resignation after spending just 45 days in office.

Truss will be the shortest-serving prime minister in UK history.

Truss' announcement, outside 10 Downing Street, follows the near-full evaporation of her political authority, a few weeks after her proposed economic reforms were met with immense criticism.

Truss’ statement came shortly after she met Graham Brady, chair of the 1922 Committee, her deputy PM, Thérèse Coffey, and the party chair, Jake Berry.

Brady said that it will be possible to conduct a leadership ballot by 28 October.

Truss would remain as prime minister until a successor is chosen. Truss said that she entered office with “a vision for a low-tax, high-growth economy that would take advantage of the freedoms of Brexit.”

“This morning I met the chairman of the 1922 Committee, Sir Graham Brady. We’ve agreed that there will be a leadership election to be completed within the next week. This will ensure that we remain on behalf to deliver our fiscal plans and maintain our country’s economic stability and national security. I will remain as prime minister until a successor has been chosen.”
Liz Truss

“I recognise that, given the situation, I cannot deliver the mandate on which I was elected by the Conservative party. I have therefore spoken to His Majesty the King to notify him that I am resigning as leader of the Conservative Party,” she said.

During her six week tenure, Truss had been forced to abandon most of her policy programmes after it triggered a market crisis and led to the collapse of her approval ratings, alongside that of the Conservative Party.

Since Friday, she lost two of her four senior-most ministers, saw new Finance minister Jeremy Hunt rip up her economic plans and faced laughter during the Prime Minister's Questions as she attempted to defend herself.

Tory Rebellion

A number of Conservative Party MPs had called for Truss to resign as she battled criticism over her failed mini-budget. Last week, she sacked her chancellor of exchequor, Kwasi Kwarteng, and appointed Jeremy Hunt as his replacement.

The political crisis deepened on Wednesday when Home Secretary Suella Braverman resigned over what she called "a mistake."

Earlier on Monday, Sir Charles Walker became the fifth Tory MP asking Truss's resignation, saying that her "position is untenable."

"She [Truss] has put colleagues, the country, through a huge amount of unnecessary pain and upset and worry. We don't need a disruptor in No 10. We need a uniter."
Walker told Sky News.

The situation can only be remedied with a new prime minister, he added.

Angela Richardson, another Tory MP, had told The Telegraph that it would be "better for the party and for the country to have a change in leadership at the top."

"Whoever comes up top in the ballot, there should be a coronation. MPs should exercise common sense about that. This is a very pivotal point in time where mucking around is just not in the national interest."
Angela Richardson

Jamie Wallis on Sunday had also called for Truss to quit as the UK Prime Minister.

Wallis said Ms Truss had "undermined Britain’s economic credibility and fractured our party irreparably."

“In recent weeks, I have watched as the government has undermined Britain’s economic credibility and fractured our Party irreparably. Enough is enough," sharing his letter, Wallis wrote on Twitter.

“I have written to the prime minister to ask her to stand down as she no longer holds the confidence of this country.”
Jamie Wallis, Conservative Party MP

Earlier, veteran MP Crispin Blunt had urged the prime minister to resign "now," The Telegraph reported. Blunt told Channel 4 that “the game is up, and it's now a question as to how the succession is managed."

His call was echoed by Andrew Bridgen, who also went public with his calls for the PM to resign.

"We cannot carry on like this. Our country, its people and our party deserve better."
Andrew Bridgentold The Telegraph.

Labour, Liberal Democrats Call for Immediate General Election

Opposition parties in the UK have called for immediate general elections and said that the Tory party had no mandate to govern.

Labour party leader Keir Starmer said that after 12 years of "Tory failure, the British people deserve so much better than this revolving door of chaos."

"The Tories have set record-high taxation, trashed our institutions and created a cost-of-living crisis. Now, they have crashed the economy so badly that people are facing £500 a month extra on their mortgages. The damage they have done will take years to fix.”'
Labour party leader Keir Starmer

Scotland’s first minister Nicola Sturgeon has also called for a general election.

"The interests of the Tory party should concern no-one right now. A General Election is now a democratic imperative," she said.


Fallout of Disappointing Policy Measures

Truss and the now-former chancellor of the exchequer, Kwasi Kwarteng, had announced extra borrowing for tax cuts, sacked the Treasury’s top bureaucrat and insisted that they will continue on the same path despite a hostile market reaction.

As a result, the Pound had crumbled to an all-time low against the US dollar after Kwarteng hinted at further tax cuts without explaining how to pay for them.

Subsequently, bond prices collapsed, sending borrowing costs to all time highs, and spooked investors sold off British assets worth $500 billion.

The British financial markets were already febrile because of the rising risk of a global recession and the three outsized rate increases as US banks aim to fight rising inflation. 

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