Liz Truss Speaks Out in First Interview since Resignation

Liz Truss Speaks Out in First Interview since Resignation

Former British Prime Minister Liz Truss has spoken out for the first time since her fall in October 2022. In an essay in the Sunday Telegraph, she blamed “a very powerful economic establishment” and a lack of political support for her failure. She still believes her planned tax cuts, which had led to chaos in the financial markets, to be correct.

Truss explained that she underestimated the resistance her free-market policies would encounter in the “system”. “I’m not claiming that I’m not to blame for what happened, but basically, I was not given a realistic chance to implement my policies by a very powerful business establishment combined with a lack of political support,” she wrote.

In the article, Truss explained that she still believes her low-tax, small-state agenda is the right thing to do, but the forces against it are too great. She claimed large sections of the media and public were left-leaning. She also criticized US President Joe Biden, who called her plan a “mistake”.

Truss took office in September 2022 after winning an intraparty campaign in the Conservative Party. She succeeded Boris Johnson, who resigned after a series of scandals. Her promises of stimulating economic growth through tax cuts and deregulation delighted Tory members, but financial markets reacted with fright. The plans for the planned tax cuts totalled £45 billion (about 50.4 billion euros).

Truss argued that this would stimulate the economy, leading to more growth and thus higher tax revenues – so the reform would finance itself to a certain extent. However, most experts and financial markets did not share this assessment. After the announcement, the pound rate plummeted, and the British central bank felt compelled to step in and buy government bonds with long maturities – without a ceiling. Truss then fired her finance minister, Kwasi Kwarteng, and then resigned. Almost all of their plans for radical tax cuts have now been withdrawn.

In the article, Truss, who has become Britain’s shortest-serving prime minister in history, also spoke kindly of her predecessor, Johnson. This is now said to have ambitions to return to the top of the government. She did not mention her successor Rishi Sunak by name but let it be known that she was critical of his tax policy, which was aimed at consolidating the budget.

Image by Number 10 (Flickr)/Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

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