A day late and a dollar short
What a difference a month makes.
On September 5, the British public were inundated with newspaper headlines heralding Liz Truss as the next Prime Minister of Britain. She had won the internal election fair and square in a contest against former chancellor Rishi Sunak.
The votes casted were as follows: Liz Truss 81,326, Rishi Sunak 60,399.
On September 6, Queen Elizabeth II, in what would be her last public sighting, invited Ms Truss to Balmoral Castle to form the next government. Two days later, the monarch passed away, plunging Britain into a period of mourning, and prompting a suspension of the Houses of Parliament and partisan politics.
Fast-forward to September 30, Ms Truss and her longtime friend, coauthor and newly appointed chancellor, Kwasi Kwarteng, took it upon themselves, without approval from her Cabinet or Caucus, to unveil their own mini-budget.
This mini-budget had a key component that allowed for high earners to escape paying their fair share of taxes. Not surprisingly, as this is a known trait of the Conservative Party to lower taxes for those who are rich, while cutting benefits and services to those who need it the most.
Almost immediately, the value of the pound dropped to its lowest value ever. As a result, the banks began hiking interest rates, mortgage lenders cancelled deals in the works, and most working-class people saw their economic woes worsen.
Not sure who her advisers are, but this disastrous policy and its ripple effects came just ahead of the party conference in Birmingham. What was meant to be a party-wide coronation for Liz Truss has become anything but.
A YouGov/Times poll was taken that showed the opposition Labour Party was now more than 30 per cent ahead of the Tories. At the same time, more than 500,000 signed a petition demanding fresh elections.
Facing this immense public pressure, much of her back bench let it be known, both privately and publicly, that she would face an internal revolt if she did not stop this policy. Leading the charge was former minister Michael Gove, who summed up Ms Truss’s actions as “a display of the wrong values”.
In several interviews, Ms Truss had no answers to the simplest of questions. Of particular note was the “car crash” interview with Sophie Ridge, of Sky News. Anyone watching that painful interview could plainly see that MsTruss is out of her depth with regard to being able to articulate anything beyond a few talking points.
Ironic as it is, she clearly lacks the personal flair and interview skills of her predecessor, Boris Johnson.
On Monday, Ms Truss and her trusted chancellor fell on their swords and made an about-turn on their policy to give tax breaks to high earners. As the Tyler Perry character Madea would say, “she was a day late and a dollar short”.
The political die has been cast.
Within one month, Liz Truss has destroyed what little credibility she had and dragged the Tory party down in the polls to a point it most likely will not recover from before the next General Election.
What a difference a month makes.
• Christopher Famous is the government MP for Devonshire East (Constituency 11). You can reach him on WhatsApp at 599-0901 or e-mail at email@example.com