Liz Truss looks poised to win UK PM race; Here's everything you need to know about her
Going head-to-head in the race for Prime Minister are current Foreign Secretary Liz Truss and former Chancellor Rishi Sunak. Britain’s new Prime Minister will be announced in Westminster at 12.30pm on Monday, September 5, 2022. The winner of the vote should then become PM the next day on September 6.
In the race to become the next prime minister of the United Kingdom, Liz Truss is pitted against her party’s Indian-origin leader Rishi Sunak. While Sunak has the support of Conservative Party MPs, as seen by numerous recent vote rounds, Truss has a strong following among the party's grassroots supporters.
46-year-old Truss comes from the north of England, which has historically been a bastion for the opposition Labour Party. The Oxford native formerly classified as a Social Democrat, a grouping that is supportive of centrist views.
Elizabeth Truss studied philosophy, politics, and economics at Oxford University, where she reportedly developed a stronger affinity for Conservative ideas of a smaller role for the government and a bigger role for the private sector in the economy. She had held several positions in the private sector, including commercial manager for ten years in the energy and telecommunications industries.
After several failed efforts to run for office in the 2000s, she finally succeeded in 2010 and was elected to the House of Commons. Truss had responsibility for the environment, food, and rural affairs after being appointed as the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Education and Childcare in 2012. She has made reference to this experience while running for office.
The most prominent position she has held, as of September 2021, is that of Secretary of Foreign Affairs or Foreign Minister.
As foreign secretary throughout the current conflict in Ukraine, Truss has frequently referred to sanctions against Russia and harshly criticised Russian President Vladimir Putin. Despite having cast a no vote in the 2016 referendum to leave the EU, she has also been in charge of negotiations with the EU on Brexit.
Truss has said she is inspired by the UK’s former prime minister Margaret Thatcher, who was known for deeply following Conservative ideals in her policies and is a revered figure among conservatives.
She has suggested immediate tax reductions, particularly in light of the increase in taxes that Sunak's role as Chancellor of the Exchequer caused. In a recent TV discussion, Sunak said that the hike was necessary to pay for the nation's public health system during COVID-19.
In a campaign video, Truss emphasised her government experience and stated that she is "dedicated to key conservative ideas, low taxes, a strong grip on expenditure, and driving growth in the economy". She promised to start working right away to "ensure Putin loses in Ukraine" and to "capture the opportunity of Brexit." She listed the three main difficulties that Britain is currently experiencing as "economic, security, and ecology."