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Tipsheet

Liz Truss to Become UK's New Prime Minister

Liz Truss was elected leader of the ruling Conservative Party on Monday, succeeding Boris Johnson as the United Kingdom’s next prime minister.

Formerly the UK’s foreign minister, Truss defeated opponent Rishi Sunak, formerly the country’s finance minister, 57 percent to 42 percent.

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Her new role will be cemented after the Queen formally approves the new government.

Truss does not automatically become prime minister on Monday as ritual dictates that the outgoing prime minister (in this case Boris Johnson) first has to tender his resignation to Queen Elizabeth II, who then appoints Truss.

As the queen is currently staying in her Scottish residence Balmoral Castle, that event will take place there rather than in Buckingham Palace in London as the 96-year-old monarch experiences continuing mobility issues.

Johnson and Truss are set to travel up to Balmoral on Tuesday and relations between the two politicians are cordial — Truss was among the high-level ministers that remained loyal to Johnson in the final death throes of his leadership, which by the end had been engulfed by several political controversies and scandals, while other top officials jumped ship. (CNBC)

“I campaigned as a Conservative, and I will govern as a Conservative,” Truss said after her victory. 

“I will deliver a bold plan to cut taxes and grow our economy,” she added. “I will deliver on the energy crisis, dealing with people’s energy bills but also dealing with the long-term issues we have on energy supply.”

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Not everyone is convinced, however.

One University of London professor described Truss to Newsweek as a political chameleon.

Truss has changed party and her position on the key question of EU membership. She was once a member of the more centrist Liberal Democrats and in favor of the U.K. remaining in the EU.

"A Liz Truss premiership marks a change in personnel more than policy for bilateral relations. As such, continuity is likely to be more the hallmark than change, even if Truss continues to maintain her sub-Mrs Thatcher act in office," Robert Singh, a professor at the Department of Politics at Birkbeck, University of London, told Newsweek.

"To some extent, Truss is an unknown quantity," he said. "Her chameleon-like evolution from Liberal Democrat and Remainer to hardline Tory Brexiteer is testimony to her political ambition more than her core convictions, which remain opaque and malleable." (Newsweek)

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Johnson wished her well and expressed his confidence that she "has the right plan" to tackle the challenges ahead. 

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