Liz Truss wins Tory leadership race to become Britain’s next PM
Liz Truss will become Britain’s next prime minister after beating Rishi Sunak in the bitterly fought Conservative leadership contest.
The foreign secretary, who won 81,326 votes (57.4%) of Tory members to the former chancellor’s 60,399 (42.6%), takes over from Boris Johnson, who was ousted by his own MPs earlier this summer.
But the euphoria of victory will quickly give way to the hard reality of the economic challenges ahead, with the country gripped by a cost of living crisis leaving families struggling to pay their energy bills this winter.
Truss has said she will reveal plans to support households within a week of taking office, with allies understood to be discussing a £100bn package that could include freezing energy bills.
She has already pledged to reverse a national insurance rise even though it disproportionately benefits the well-off.
After the announcement on Tuesday, Truss promised a “bold plan” to cut taxes and grow the economy and said that she would “deal with” soaring energy bills as well as longer-term energy supply, but gave no further detail on how she would do so.
Britain’s fourth Tory prime minister in six years declared “we will deliver, we will deliver and we will deliver” on the many challenges facing her government, including the state of the NHS.
Significantly, Truss appeared to rule out a snap general election, telling the audience in central London that she would “deliver a great victory for the Conservative party in 2024”.
She added: “I know that our beliefs resonate with the British people: our beliefs in freedom, in the ability to control your own life, in low taxes, in personal responsibility.
Truss also praised the outgoing prime minister, saying he was admired “from Kyiv to Carlisle”, perhaps unaware that the Tories lost the council covering Carlisle to Labour in May.
After her speech, she was planning to go out for a victory lunch with her husband, Hugh O’Leary, and her closest aides. with her work as prime minister starting on Tuesday.