LONDON, Oct 20, (AP): British Prime Minister Liz Truss resigned Thursday – bowing to the inevitable after a tumultuous, short-lived term in which her policies triggered financial turmoil in markets and a rebellion in her party that obliterated her authority. Making a hastily scheduled statement outside her 10 Downing Street office, Truss acknowledged that “I cannot deliver the mandate on which I was elected by the Conservative Party.” Hers is the third resignation by a Conservative prime minister in as many years and leaves a divided party seeking a leader who can unify its warring factions.
Truss, who said she will remain in office for a few more days while that process unfolds, has been prime minister for just 45 days. Just a day earlier she had vowed to stay in power, saying she was “a fighter and not a quitter.” But Truss couldn’t hold on any longer after a senior minister quit her government with a barrage of criticism and a vote in the House of Commons descended into chaos and acrimony just days after she was forced to abandon many of her economic policies.
A growing number of lawmakers had called for Truss to resign after weeks of turmoil sparked by her economic plan. When it was unveiled by the government last month, the plan triggered a financial turmoil and a political crisis that has seen the replacement of Trusts’ Treasury chief, multiple policy U-turns and a breakdown of discipline in the governing Conservative Party. Earlier, Conservative lawmaker Simon Hoare said the government was in disarray. “Nobody has a route plan. It’s all sort of hand-to-hand fighting on a day-to-day basis,” he told the BBC on Thursday.
Truss quit after a meeting with Graham Brady, a senior Conservative lawmaker who oversees leadership challenges. Brady was tasked with assessing whether the prime minister still has the support of Tory members of Parliament – and it seemed she did not. “It’s time for the prime minister to go,” Conservative lawmaker Miriam Cates said earlier Thursday. Another, Steve Double, said of Truss: “She isn’t up to the job, sadly.” Legislator Ruth Edwards said “it is not responsible for the party to allow her to remain in power.” Lawmakers’ anger grew after a Wednesday evening vote over fracking for shale gas – a practice that Trust wants to resume despite opposition from many Conservatives – produced chaotic scenes in Parliament.
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