Liz Truss has announced her sudden resignation as the successor to Boris Johnson as the U.K.’s Prime Minister after only 44 days in office. Her term in office will be the shortest in modern history.
A new leader of Parliament is expected to be elected by the end of next week.
Impressive job! In her short tenure –
Economic turmoil https://t.co/PjhGUFLrwg
— RAMZPAUL (@ramzpaul) October 20, 2022
Truss appeared outside her official residence on Downing Street on Thursday morning to make the announcement. She said: “I came into office at a time of great economic and international instability. Families and businesses were worried about how to pay their bills.”
She said that she believes she was elected with a clear mandate to change the economic situation in Britain. However, she recognized 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,” Truss said.
She is expected to remain in office until her replacement is named.
The sudden resignation came just one day after Truss told Parliament that she is a “fighter, not a quitter”.
Speculation has begun over who will be the next British leader. Some have suggested new chancellor Jeremy Hunt might be elevated, but U.K. media sources have said already that Hunt will not stand for the office.
Multiple members of the Conservative Party have been suggested, and even Boris Johnson’s name has come up as a possible replacement.
Truss’s short term was plagued with a budgetary crisis from the start. Former chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng proposed an intermediate “mini-budget” about a month ago. The proposal led to economic turmoil and he was fired from office last Friday.
Hunt, who did not support Truss when she was campaigning for Prime Minister, took over immediately as chancellor and rejected the tax cuts that were included in Kwarteng’s mini-budget on Monday. That directly undermined Truss and her viability as the nation’s leader.
Truss’s home secretary Suella Braverman announced on Wednesday evening that she was quitting her post after revealing she broke security rules by sending official messages over her personal email. She said the breach was accidental.
Braverman, who is part of the right wing of the Conservative Party and ran against Truss for Prime Minister, took a shot at Truss in her resignation letter. She wrote: “The business of government relies upon people accepting responsibility for their mistakes. Pretending we haven’t made mistakes, carrying on as if everyone can’t see that we have made them and hoping that things will magically come right is not serious politics.”
By Wednesday evening, some Tory Members of Parliament were joining Labour Party Members of Parliament in calling for Truss to step down.
Shortly before Truss announced her resignation, Conservative Party lawmaker Simon Hoare told the BBC that she had “about 12 hours” to resolve the budget crisis. Others were not willing to grant her even that much time, demanding that she step down immediately.