Liz Truss became U.K. prime minister on Tuesday and immediately confronted the enormous task ahead of her amid increasing pressure to curb soaring prices, ease labor unrest and fix a health care system burdened by long waiting lists and staff shortages, reports NPR.
Liz Truss is now officially the U.K.'s prime minister after meeting with the queen (NPR)
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Excerpt from NPR: Truss, 47, took office Tuesday afternoon at Balmoral Castle in Scotland, when Queen Elizabeth II formally asked her to form a new government in a carefully choreographed ceremony dictated by centuries of tradition. Johnson, who announced his intention to step down two months ago, formally resigned during his own audience with the queen a short time earlier. Truss became prime minister a day after the ruling Conservative Party chose her as its leader in an election where the party's 172,000 dues-paying members were the only voters. As party leader, Truss automatically became prime minister without the need for a general election because the Conservatives still have a majority in the House of Commons.
Scrambling to spare millions of households the pain of skyrocketing energy bills this winter, Britain’s new prime minister, Liz Truss, announced a sweeping plan on Thursday to freeze gas and electricity rates for two years, at a cost of tens of billions of pounds to the British Treasury, according to the New York Times.
"This is a moment to be bold," Ms. Truss said to a raucous House of Commons. "We are facing a global energy crisis, and there are no cost-free options."
U.K.’s New Leader Lays Out Sweeping Plan to Cap Energy Prices (New York Times)
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Excerpt from the New York Times: The plan, rolled out by Ms. Truss on her third day in office, could mean the largest government intervention in the economy in decades, even bigger than the emergency measures during the coronavirus pandemic, when the state spent 78 billion pounds, now about $90 billion, to keep people in their jobs. While the government did not put a price tag on the policy, the head of the Institute for Fiscal Studies, an independent watchdog, said it could easily cost over £100 billion just in the next year. The move is intended to shield people from a jolting increase in energy costs next month, when the annual price for electricity and natural gas for a typical British household is scheduled to jump. Under the plan, average annual costs would be capped. Costs for businesses, charities and schools would also be capped for six months, underscoring the extraordinary reach of the program.
On Friday, with the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, Truss described the Queen as one of the world's greatest-ever leaders, as she opened two days of tributes in Parliament, reports BBC News.
PM Liz Truss opens tributes to Queen Elizabeth II in Parliament (BBC News)
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Excerpt from BBC News: Liz Truss, who was appointed PM by the monarch just three days ago, said she was an "icon" of modern Britain. Her predecessor Boris Johnson told MPs "Elizabeth the Great" had taught the nation "how to give, how to love, and how to serve". MPs held a minute's silence to mark her death after 70 years on the throne. Both houses of Parliament are sitting on Friday and Saturday to allow politicians to pay tribute to the Queen, following her death on Thursday. Parliament will then be postponed until after 21 September. Striking a somber tone for this occasion, Ms. Truss said the Queen's "sheer humanity" had made her "loved and admired" all over the world.
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