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Nottingham Post
Nottingham Post
Charlotte Smith

What happens now Liz Truss has resigned, will there be an election and who could be the next UK Prime Minister?

Liz Truss has stepped down as Prime Minister of the UK today (Oct 20) after just 44 days in power. The dramatic resignation comes after a morning of meetings at Downing Street and a chaotic Wednesday evening, which saw Ms Braverman lash out at Ms Truss’ “tumultuous” premiership as she resigned as Home Secretary.

Following former Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng's sacking and recent onslaught from Tory MPs demanding she step down, Liz Truss said outside No 10 this afternoon: “I recognise, though, given the situation, I cannot deliver the mandate on which I was elected by the Conservative Party.

"I have therefore spoken to His Majesty the King, to notify him that I am resigning as leader of the Conservative Party. This morning, I met the chairman of the 1922 Committee, Sir Graham Brady. We've agreed that there will be a leadership election, to be completed within the next week."

READ MORE: Liz Truss news: Live updates as Prime Minister resigns after days of chaos

Ms Truss has now become the shortest-serving PM in British history within 24 hours after she declared 'I'm a fighter, not a quitter'. Her resignation means the UK is set to see it's third Conservative Party leader 'within weeks'.

So what's going to happen next, what have other MPs said and will there be a general election? Here's everything you need to know...

What happens next?

An emergency meeting of the Conservative Party board will be held at 4pm today, The Telegraph understands.

Allies of Chancellor Jeremy Hunt have said he will not be standing for the Tory leadership.

Sir Graham Brady said the current plan is for Tory members to play a role in choosing the next party leader. Upon being asked if members will be included and get a vote, he replied: "That is the expectation."

However, he said that there could only be one candidate which emerges which would therefore mean that no grassroots ballot would be needed.

Speaking to reporters outside Parliament, he said: "The party's rules say there will be two candidates unless there is only one candidate. If there is only one candidate there is only one candidate."

Will there be a general election, and if so, when?

UK Prime Ministers and their respective parliaments can only serve a term of five years from the day on which they first meet. The current parliament met on December 17 2019 and is set to dissolve on December 17 2024.

Polling Day would be expected to take place 25 days later - so the next general election would be held in January 2025. However, no official date has yet been set.

Unusually, there have been three general elections in recent years, with the last taking place on December 12, 2019, which saw Boris Johnson move into Number 10. Before that, there was one on June 8 2017 and May 7 2015, seeing Theresa May and David Cameron take office respectively.

But for an early general election to be called, it is typically up to the Prime Minster themselves to make the decision. This hasn’t always been the case though, as in 2011, a law was passed that removed the PM’s power to call an early election.

Instead, it was the House of Commons that made the decision under certain conditions, such as two-thirds agreeing to a vote. This law was reversed in 2019 though, with the Tories introducing a new law called the Dissolution and Calling of Parliament Act 2022, reports the Mirror.

Who could be the next Prime Minister?

Rishi Sunak looks set to be the next leader of the Conservative Party, and the next Prime Minister, with a leadership election being held within a week - according to bookmakers. Rishi Sunak is the 11/10 favourite to be the next Tory leader after Liz Truss resigned.

Penny Mordaunt follows behind at 7/2 to be the next Tory leader, with Ben Wallace 8/1 and Jeremy Hunt 9/1./ Meanwhile, Boris Johnson is 13/1 to make a sensational comeback at No.10.

Betfair spokesperson Sam Rosbottom said: "After Liz Truss resigned from No.10 to become the shortest serving Prime Minister, her former leadership election rival Rishi Sunak is the 11/10 favourite to take the top job.

"Penny Mordaunt, who also stood to replace Boris Johnson, is next in the market at 7/2 and Ben Wallace is next at 8/1, while recently-appointed Chancellor Jeremy Hunt is 9/1. A sensational return for Johnson, who was replaced by Truss, is 13/1 and far from out of the question according to the odds."

What has Sir Graham Brady said about her resignation?

Sir Graham Brady, the chairman of the 1922 Committee, said: "I have spoken to the party chairman, Jake Berry, and he has confirmed that it will be possible to conduct a ballot and conclude a leadership election by Friday the 28th of October.

"So we should have a new leader in place before the fiscal statement which will take place on the 31st."

Asked "Do you accept that this is a complete 'dog's dinner'?" by reported outside Parliament, Sir Graham Brady replied: "It certainly is not a circumstance I wish to see."

What have other MPs said?

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said: "After 12 years of Tory failure, the British people deserve so much better than this revolving door of chaos. We need a general election, now."

Nicola Sturgeon MSP tweeted: "There are no words to describe this utter shambles adequately. It’s beyond hyperbole - & parody. Reality tho is that ordinary people are paying the price. The interests of the Tory party should concern no-one right now. A General Election is now a democratic imperative."

Andrew Bridgen, a Tory MP, said Liz Truss had made the "right decision" as he said "egos will have to be put aside" during the forthcoming leadership contest.

Sir Ed Davey, the leader of the Liberal Democrats, said: “Boris Johnson failed our country and Liz Truss trashed our economy. The Conservatives have proven time and time again they are not fit to lead our great country. We do not need another Conservative Prime Minister lurching from crisis to crisis, we need a general election, we need the Conservatives out of power and we need real change.

Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross said: “I wish Liz Truss and her family well. No matter where you stand on her decisions as Prime Minister, politics can be very tough on people personally.

What did Liz Truss say in her full resignation speech?

Standing in front of the steps of No 10, she said: "I came into office at a time of great economic and international instability.

"Families and businesses were worried about how to pay their bills. Putin's illegal war in Ukraine threatens the security of our whole continent. And our country has been held back for too long by low economic growth.

"I was elected by the Conservative Party with a mandate to change this. We delivered on energy bills, and on cutting National Insurance. And we set out a vision for a low-tax, high-growth economy that would take advantage of the freedoms of Brexit.

"I recognise, though, given the situation, I cannot deliver the mandate on which I was elected by the Conservative Party.

"I have therefore spoken to His Majesty the King, to notify him that I am resigning as leader of the Conservative Party.

"This morning, I met the chairman of the 1922 Committee, Sir Graham Brady. We've agreed that there will be a leadership election, to be completed within the next week.

"This will ensure that we remain on a path to deliver our fiscal plans and maintain our country's economic stability and national security. I will remain as Prime Minister until a successor has been chosen. Thank you."


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