U.K. Prime Minister Liz Truss resigned on Thursday, October 20th, following a failed tax-cutting budget that rocked financial markets and which led to a revolt within her own Conservative Party.
(LONDON, ENGLAND).- Truss was in office for just 44 days, making her the shortest-serving prime minister in British history. For 10 days of her premiership government business was paused following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.
She said in a statement outside Downing Street, “We set out a vision for a low-tax, high-growth economy that would take advantage of the freedoms of Brexit.”
“I recognize though, given the situation, I cannot deliver the mandate on which I was elected by the Conservative Party. I have therefore spoken to His Majesty the King to announce that I am resigning as leader of the Conservative Party.”
Former UK Prime Minister Theresa May has said Liz Truss was right to stand down as leader of the country, in order to provide a “roadmap for an orderly transition.”
“MPs must now be prepared to compromise. It is our duty to provide sensible, competent government at this critical moment for our country,” she said on twitter.
The record-breaking brevity of Liz Truss’s catastrophic stint as prime minister is perhaps best encapsulated by her defeat in a much-publicized contest with Britain’s most famous lettuce.
The Daily Star tabloid posed an unexpected question last Friday, after Truss sacked her chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng and U-turned on her disastrous mini-budget, seemingly putting her premiership on course for a collision with an iceberg.
“Can Liz Truss outlast a lettuce?” the paper asked.
The Prime Minister is right to provide a roadmap for an orderly transition.— Theresa May (@theresa_may) October 20, 2022
MPs must now be prepared to compromise. It is our duty to provide sensible, competent government at this critical moment for our country.
To test the theory it set up a live stream showing a 24/7 view of a lettuce alongside a picture of Truss, which quickly went viral.
And, on Thursday, thousands flocked to the video to watch the lettuce celebrate its astonishing victory.
BREAKING NEWS:— Daily Star (@dailystar) October 20, 2022
🚨 THE LETTUCE HAS OFFICIALLY OUTLASTED LIZ TRUSS AND WON 🚨
ALL HAIL THE LETTUCE.
“I can’t believe the lettuce won,” Labour MP Afzal Khan wrote on Twitter. “The lettuce wins with time to spare!” added SNP lawmaker Owen Thompson.
Though the lettuce showed signs of browning during the six-day contest, it appears healthy enough to have held off Truss’s challenge for a further few days if necessary.
London’s Mayor Sadiq Khan has told CNN the UK has become “a laughing stock” due to the ongoing chaos at the heart of government.
“I’m not somebody who’s easily surprised or easily shocked, but I’m surprised and shocked that just a few weeks after Liz Truss became the Conservative leader and the British prime minister we have the chaos we’ve seen over the last few days and weeks, leading to her resigning today,” Khan told Christiane Amanpour.
“What we don’t want is yet another internal Conservative leadership contest,” Khan said.
“What we need is for Liz Truss or whoever Conservative members choose to be the next leader to give the British public the opportunity of voting for a fresh start.”