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Truss-Sunak news – live: Tories fear election loss in two years amid ‘puerile’ battle

‘Good god no’: Former Tory MP says she wouldn’t rejoin party under Rishi Sunak or Liz Truss

The Conservative Party will be out of power in two years’ time if it continues on its “current trajectory” of “embarrassing” episodes during the leadership contest, an MP has warned.

Tory MP Johnny Mercer made cutting remarks during the party’s leadership contest that has rivals Rishi Sunak and Liz Truss preparing for their first TV debate on BBC tonight.

Mr Mercer said the contest has become “puerile” after MP Angela Richardson tweeted “FFS Nadine! Muted” in response to Nadine Dorries’ critical comments about Mr Sunak’s expensive clothes.

Ms Dorries, the culture secretary, tweeted: “Liz Truss will be traveling the country wearing her earrings which cost circa £4.50 from Claire Accessories. Meanwhile…

“Rishi visits Teeside in Prada shoes worth £450 and sported £3,500 bespoke suit as he prepared for crunch leadership vote.”

Mr Mercer said: “Probably worth remembering that on current trajectory we are out of power in two years’ time.

“The puerile nature of this leadership contest is embarrassing. Time to raise the standards.”

Next week, the 160,000-strong Tory membership will vote on whether Mr Sunak or Ms Truss will succeed Mr Johnson.

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‘Just me then?’: Sunak in dig at Truss over C4 interview

Rishi Sunak’s team has attempted to capitalize on his competitor Liz Truss’ hesitancy to be questioned by veteran political journalist Andrew Neil.

Channel 4 announced that former chancellor Mr Sunak will be interviewed on the Andrew Neil Show on Friday about his bid to become the next prime minister – something Boris Johnson had refused to do before becoming PM in 2019.

In response to the announcement, Mr Sunak tweeted using a winking emoji: “Just me then?”

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‘Tories will be out of power if puerile episodes continue’ – MP

The Conservative Party will be out of power in two years’ time if it continues on its “current trajectory” of “embarrassing” episodes during the leadership contest, an MP has warned.

Tory MP Johnny Mercer made cutting remarks during the party’s leadership contest that has rivals Rishi Sunak and Liz Truss preparing for their first TV debate on BBC tonight.

Mr Mercer said the contest has become “puerile” after MP Angela Richardson tweeted “FFS Nadine! Muted” in response to Nadine Dorries’ critical comments about Mr Sunak’s expensive clothes.

He said: “Probably worth remembering that on current trajectory we are out of power in two years’ time.

“The puerile nature of this leadership contest is embarrassing. Time to raise the standards.”

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Johnson has bid ‘farewell’ amid attempts to keep him as PM

Boris Johnson has “given his farewell address to Parliament”, his official spokesman said in response to reports that he could stay on as prime minister.

Johnson loyalists claim that around 10,000 party members have signed a petition calling for his name to be added to the leadership ballot for when the 160,000-strong membership vote on who will be his successor.

Boris Johnson during his last session of Prime Minister’s Questions as PM

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Boris Johnson during his last session of Prime Minister’s Questions as PM

(UK PARLIAMENT/AFP via Getty Image)

They believe that putting his name on the ballot alongside Rishi Sunak and Liz Truss would give Mr Johnson the chance to remain in No 10.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “You heard the Prime Minister say his farewell address to Parliament, he gave advice for his successor.

“Beyond that, obviously I can’t comment on what the Prime Minister may choose to do once he ceases to be Prime Minister, that wouldn’t be one for me.”

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Sunak to be grilled by veteran political journalist Andrew Neil

Rishi Sunak has agreed to be interviewed by political journalist Andrew Neil later this week, but his rival Tory leadership has so far declined to take part.

Channel 4 said that former chancellor Mr Sunak will be questioned on Friday on the Andrew Neil Show about his campaign to succeed Boris Johnson as prime minister.

Andrew Neil (second left) on the Andrew Neil Show

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Andrew Neil (second left) on the Andrew Neil Show

(AP Mean)

The channel said it “hopes” Mr Sunak’s competitor, foreign secretary Liz Truss, will agree to be questioned so that “the British public [can] better understand what she stands for”.

Before Mr Johnson became PM, he had refused to be interviewed by Mr Neil during the 2019 general election campaign.

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Labor scrapping 2019 manifesto’s nationalization policies

Sir Keir Starmer said he would take a “pragmatic” approach to nationalization after shadow chancellor Rachel Reeves said such policies would not work under Labour’s new “fiscal rules”.

Earlier today, Ms Reeves said that Labor in government would not nationalize rail, energy and water companies and that the party has scrapped such pledges to do so that were in the party’s 2019 under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership.

She told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “Within our fiscal rules, to be spending billions of pounds on nationalizing things, that just doesn’t stack up against our fiscal rules.”

Labour Party leader Sir Keir Starmer and Shadow chancellor Rachel Reeves

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Labor Party leader Sir Keir Starmer and Shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves

(Stefan Rousseau/PA)

Later, in the Q&A session after his speech in Liverpool, Labor leader Sir Keir said: “I take a pragmatic approach rather than an ideological one, I agree with what Rachel Reeves said this morning.

“Having come through the pandemic, it’s very important we have very, very clear priorities and that’s why we’ve set out fiscal rules already as an Opposition.”

Pressed on whether he still intended to take railways back into public ownership, Sir Keir said: “I think what some of our mayors and metro mayors are doing with public transport is the right way forward – absolutely focused on keeping the price down and making sure there’s control over where things go.

“I absolutely understand the frustrations of everybody trying to use the rail service.”

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Net zero and growth come hand-in-hand, Starmer says

“A plan for net-zero needs growth, a plan for growth needs net-zero,” Sir Keir Starmer said in a speech in Liverpool today- adding that if we “fail to tackle climate change” we can “forget about growth”.

Watch the full clip here:

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Starmer says Sunak and Truss are ‘part of the problem’

Labor leader Sir Keir Starmer said Tory leadership candidates Rishi Sunak and Liz Truss are “part of the problem” and their answers “too small”.

Answering questions after his speech, Sir Keir said: “What we’re seeing from the leadership contest is two individuals who are part of the problem.

“We’ve had 12 years now of stagnation, they have voted for every one of those 15 tax rises and now they’re trying to distance themselves as quickly as possible from it.

“Their answers, if you like, are too small for our country, for the challenge that we face.”

(PA)

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Former Tory MP Edwina Currie appears with cardboard cut-out of Boris Johnson on live TV

Former Tory MP Edwina Currie appears with cardboard cut-out of Boris Johnson on live TV

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‘No more magic tree economics’, Labour’s Keir Starmer says

Sir Keir Starmer has vowed a Labor government would be “financially responsible” as he attacked the “Conservative competition to waste more of your money”.

In a speech in Liverpool, the Labor leader said: “The risk of rising inflation could not be clearer so we will not announce a single penny of day-to-day spending without saying how we would pay for it.

“We will only borrow to invest to meet the challenges of the future, that’s what our Climate Investment Pledge is all about. And we will set a target to reduce debt as an overall share of our economy, that’s the responsible thing to do.

“And the contrast with the Conservative competition to waste more of your money could not be starker.

“With me, with (shadow chancellor) Rachel Reeves, you will always get sound finances, careful spending, strong, secure and fair growth.

“There will be no magic money tree economics with us.”

(PA)

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Starmer says economic strength is drawn from ‘too few places’

Labor leader Sir Keir Starmer said he is alarmed that some people’s feel hard work does not pay.

Sir Keir said: “People feel that hard work is not rewarded,” adding: “In a nutshell we draw our economic strength from too few places.

“If you want evidence of this, look no further than the cost-of-living crisis. Everywhere I go I hear the same stories: people scared about the future, worried that when winter comes they will face horrible choices.

“There’s one thing I hear time and time again, that worries me more than anything else, and that is working people telling me hard work doesn’t pay. That they are working harder and harder just to stand still.

“Now that alarms me.”

He said he was concerned people from his “working class” background cannot get on, and asked: “What does it say about the state of Britain when working people feel hard work doesn’t pay?”

Sir Keir Starmer gives a speech in Liverpool this morning

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Sir Keir Starmer gives a speech in Liverpool this morning

(PA)

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