‘I can win against Keir Starmer’ Truss lays claim for PM to fight Labour in next election

Tory leadership: Liz Truss says she can win against Keir Starmer

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Speaking to Sky News, the foreign secretary said she will be “working very hard over the next six weeks” as she attempts to convince the 200,000 Conservative Party members that she should be the next leader of the party. She pledged to “lower taxes and open up opportunity” to help “deliver the economic growth that Britain needs”. Ms Truss won 113 votes in Wednesday’s final round of MP voting, narrowly pushing Ms Mordaunt into third place on 105.

The foreign secretary said: “I’m not complacent at all. I am going to be working very hard over the next six weeks to put my case to Conservative Party members. 

“What I believe is that lowering taxes and opening up opportunities is going to help us deliver the economic growth that Britain needs. 

“It is also going to help us deliver the next [general] election. 

“I can win against Keir Starmer in 2024. That’s my message to Party members right across the country.” 

Rishi Sunak and Liz Truss will battle it out over the coming weeks to be the UK’s next prime minister.

The former chancellor and the foreign secretary finished in the top two places after five rounds of voting by Tory MPs, with Penny Mordaunt eliminated from the race after a bitter contest in Westminster.

Mr Sunak, the frontrunner throughout the parliamentary leg of the contest, received 137 votes in the final round of voting.

Mr Sunak and Ms Truss will now face a campaign to win the votes of Tory members, with the result of the contest announced on September 5.

The winner is expected to replace Boris Johnson as prime minister the following day.

Ms Mordaunt had been second in all previous rounds of voting, but a late surge by Ms Truss cost her a place on the ballot.

The foreign secretary gained 27 votes, Mr Sunak put on 19 while Ms Mordaunt could only gain an extra 13 supporters.

Bookmakers have made Ms Truss the favourite to win the contest in the country, owing to her believed popularity among party members, but Mr Sunak has claimed he is best placed to beat Labour’s Sir Keir Starmer at the next election.

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The Tory party announced 12 locations across the UK where they will hold public hustings between the final two, with the first being in Leeds on July 28.

They will visit Cardiff, Perth, Northern Ireland, Manchester and Birmingham in the following weeks before the final hustings in London on August 31.

Ms Truss said: “I am excited to now take to the country to make the case to the Conservative Party about my bold new economic plan that will cut taxes, grow our economy and unleash the potential of everyone in our United Kingdom.

“As prime minister I would hit the ground running from day one, unite the Party and govern in line with Conservative values.”

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