Who is Liz Truss? All you need to know about Conservative Party leader who defeated Rishi Sunak in PM's race

The 47-year-old defeated rival Rishi Sunak, taking power at a time when the English country faces a cost of living and industrial crisis, and a recession.

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Monday, September 05, 2022, 05:47 PM IST
article-image
AP

Liz Truss on Monday was named leader of the governing Conservative Party and Britain's next Prime Minister, succeeding Boris Johnson. The 47-year-old defeated rival Rishi Sunak, taking power at a time when the English country faces a cost of living and industrial crisis, and a recession.

The Foreign Secretary was raised in a left-wing household and and attended a state school, unlike many of her privately educated Conservative colleagues.

As a child, Truss marched in demonstrations against Conservative PM Margaret Thatcher. As an adult, she admired Britain's first female leader, only to become the third female PM of the country.

Following the footsteps of Thatcher, who governed from 1979 to 1990, and Theresa May, who led the country from 2016 to 2019, Truss was embraced by the Conservative Party members as she vowed to slash taxes andd red tape to keep up Britain's unwavering support for Ukraine since Russia's invasion.

Political journey

She has attended Oxford University, where she studied philosophy, politics, and economics. She was also President of the university branch of the liberal Democratic Party. She has been instrumental in decriminalizing of marijuana and arguing in a speech for the abolition of the monarchy.

Truss joined the Conservative Party when it was 'distinctly unfashionable', she said. She was an economist for energy giant, Shell and telecommunications company Cable and Wireless.

The politician has also served as a local councilor in London and ran unsuccessfully for parliament twice before being elected to represent the eastern England seat of Southwest Norfold in the year 2010.

Reportedly at that time, locals were outrages when it was revealed she had had an affair with another MP when the duo were already married to others. However, after a bumpy road, she finally secured a Conservative seat, winning over her critics, and her marriage survived.

Truss, and her husband Hugh O'Leary, who is an accountant, are blessed with two teenage daughters. Truss has established the Free Enterprise group of Thatcherite Tory lawmakers who produced 'Britannia Unchained'.

In 2014, the 47-year-old got her first cabinet job as the food and environment secretary. She made her biggest impression with a much-mocked speech in which she thundered that it was "a disgrace" that Britain imports two-thirds of its cheese.

She became the Justice Secretary in 2016, however, was demoted to a more junior role in the treasury by Theresa May in 2017. When Johnson won, Truss was made Trade Secretary, travelling around the world to sign post-Brexit trade deals, which also allowed her to raise her profile.

In September 2021, she was made Foreign Secretary, UK's top diplomat. Her performance has garnered mixed reviews. However, she is considered a Johnson loyalist, while rival Rishi Sunak's decision to quit the cabinet hasn’t gone down well with several party members.

Conservatives have also embraced Truss' optimistic message of liberation through less government. Truss's vision of a 'network of liberty', binds democracies around the world.

(With inputs: AP)

(To receive our E-paper on whatsapp daily, please click here. To receive it on Telegram, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

RECENT STORIES

Five controversial Noble Prize winners in the past

Five controversial Noble Prize winners in the past

Australian scientists are planning to grow plants on moon by 2025

Australian scientists are planning to grow plants on moon by 2025

NASA's Juno shares magnificent images of Europa

NASA's Juno shares magnificent images of Europa

Mahsa Amini died due to illness, not police beatings, says Iran

Mahsa Amini died due to illness, not police beatings, says Iran

Action initiated on all cases, India counters UK Home Secy Braverman claim on visa overstayers

Action initiated on all cases, India counters UK Home Secy Braverman claim on visa overstayers