Liz Truss Expected to Launch Political Comeback on Sunday – Liz Truss is set to make a political comeback on Sunday, after her 49-day tenure as prime minister came to a close. She will kick off her return with an opinion piece in the Sunday Telegraph and several media appearances. Truss has kept a low profile since her ill-fated mini-budget of £45bn in unfunded tax cuts marked the start of her downfall.
With her return to the Conservative backbench, Truss now holds the unique distinction of having the shortest tenure as prime minister. Her contribution to the Sunday Telegraph is anticipated to be a retrospective of her brief time in the Prime Minister’s office and to highlight where she perceives Rishi Sunak’s errors. Despite her controversial record in the economy, Truss is expected to advocate for Chancellor Jeremy Hunt to decrease taxes in the upcoming budget.
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A close ally told HuffPost: “Liz has taken a few months to gather her thoughts and is now ready to speak about her time in office and the current state of play.” Her allies, including the former Cabinet minister Simon Clarke, have recently formed the Conservative Growth Group to push for her tax-cutting agenda. Following a number of scheduled media appearances over the next week, Truss is also due to deliver a “hawkish” speech on China that could add to the pressure already mounting on Sunak, who only took over from her in October.
Later in February, Truss will speak at a conference of international politicians in Japan, discussing the threat from Beijing to Taiwan. Her speech could create divisions among Conservative MPs, with many favoring tax cuts over Sunak and taking a more confrontational approach towards China. The conference is being organized by the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC), a group seeking to unite international efforts against Beijing, and Truss will give her speech on the 17th of February.
She is expected to be joined by two other former prime ministers, Australia’s Scott Morrison and Guy Verhofstadt of Belgium. An ally of Truss said the speech would be “hawkish,” telling PA Media: “She’s expected to address Sunak’s decision to brand China a strategic competitor rather than a threat.” She had been expected to officially redesignate China as a “threat” in official speak, instead of a “systemic competitor” during her leadership.
In November Sunak said the “golden era” of UK-Chinese relations was over but described the country as a “systemic challenge” rather than a threat. That marked a dialling down of his language, having called it the “biggest long-term threat to Britain” during the summer leadership contest to replace Boris Johnson. Truss’s return to the international stage follows Johnson’s own re-emergence, having made visits to Ukraine to visit Volodymyr Zelenskiy, as well as to the US.
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Shortly after Truss was forced to resign 45 days into the job, her former speech writer said she took a “Spinal Tap approach” to the government, demanding the volume was “turned up to 11.” Asa Bennett said the former prime minister had arrived in Downing Street determined to put “rocket boosters” under the economy and that it was a matter of “bitter regret” that her efforts had failed.