‘Extraordinary Chaos’: Truss’ Downing Street Nightmare

British Prime Minister Liz Truss has announced her resignation after a chaotic six weeks in the top position.

Leaving aside 10 days of mourning for the late Queen Elizabeth II, Truss had just a week before her political program imploded, leading to the resignation of her Chancellor of the Exchequer.

– 5 September –

As the new leader of the largest party in parliament, that makes her prime minister – despite the support of less than 0.2 percent of the electorate and a minority of her own MPs.

Truss appoints the like-minded Kwasi Kwarteng as Minister of Finance.

Truss unveils a costly plan to cut household energy bills in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

– Sept 23 –

But there are no fundraising measures.

The announcement immediately drew political fire for being unfair. But the most tantalizing judgment comes from the markets as the pound plummets towards parity against the dollar.

The budget has been dubbed “Kami-Kwasi” by the media, which has begun to report tensions between Kwarteng and Truss, and deep unrest among Tory MPs, including cabinet ministers.

With bond market turmoil endangering UK pension funds, the Bank of England is announcing a two-week program to buy long-term UK bonds, capped initially at £65bn, “to restore orderly market conditions”.

Pollsters YouGov report a 33-point lead for the main opposition Labor party – the largest margin over the Tories since the heyday of former Labor Prime Minister Tony Blair in the late 1990s.

– October 3 –

In her own conference address on Oct. 5, Truss pledges to pursue her “growth, growth, growth” agenda, but fails to reassure party rebels and nervous markets.

– October 10 –

But on Oct. 12, Truss rules out any cut in government spending, despite promising the remaining tax cuts will not turn around, reinforcing the perception of a government in chaos.

As markets continue to rattle and pressure on Truss mounts, the Prime Minister fires Kwarteng after just 38 days in the role.

She nominates former Secretary of State Jeremy Hunt in his place.

In what the right-wing tabloid The Sun calls “a day of extraordinary chaos,” hard-core Home Secretary Suella Braverman quits after arguing with Truss and Hunt over immigration, saying she had “serious concerns” about the government.

Truss wins the vote, but many MPs rioted anyway, informing journalists that this was the final nail in the coffin to Truss’s premiership.

Truss announces her resignation as Conservative Party leader after just six weeks in power and says her successor will be chosen by the end of next week.

jit-yy/kjm

Originally published as ‘Extraordinary Chaos’: Truss’s Nightmare in Downing Street

Leave a Comment