Born in Leeds to left-wing parents, Elizabeth Truss has been the Conservative MP for South West Norfolk since 2010. She has now become one of the Cabinet’s longest serving and senior members.
In September 2021, she was appointed Foreign Secretary, only the second woman to hold the role after Labour’s Margaret Beckett.
Truss was quickly picked out as a rising star in the Conservative Party, and as early as 2012, she was made an Education Minister. Since 2014, Truss has held a number of Cabinet positions.
Truss is seen as being on the right of the Conservative Party and previously claimed that Margaret Thatcher was her ‘favourite’ Prime Minister. Since the election of Boris Johnson this view may have changed though. Truss is known for her fervent support of the PM.
Liz Truss – 4 Things you may not know
In an interview with politics.co.uk, Truss said of her upbringing: ‘you know the kind of circles we moved in … My mum was a member of the CND and I have memories of going on marches with her when I was a child, so I suppose I had an awareness of and an interest in politics from quite an early age’.
Truss’ father, a professor of mathematics, refused to campaign for his daughter when she stood for election in 2010.
Liz Truss was once a Liberal Democrat
Truss did not take an immediate jump from left-wing politics to the Conservative party.
At the age of 17, she became a card-carrying member of the Liberal Democrats-and by her days at Oxford, Truss was presiding over the University’s Liberal Democrat society.
In 1994 it has been reported that 19 year old Liz Truss actually made a speech from the stage at that year’s Liberal Democrat annual conference in Brighton.
In the speech, Truss reporedly called for the abolition of the monarchy no less, saying, “I agree with Paddy Ashdown when he said: ‘Everybody in Britain should have the chance to be a somebody'” before adding, “But only one family can provide the head of the state. We Liberal Democrats believe in opportunity for all. We do not believe people are born to rule'”.
Liz Truss believes everyone should study maths till they are 18
Truss’ father is a mathematician, and she has certainly inherited his fondness for numbers. A one time member of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Maths and Numeracy, Truss has spoken in favour of having Maths taught to students until they turn 18.
An early adopter of social media
Truss was one of the first MPs to make use of social media and she is one of the most followed government ministers.
After two unsuccessful attempts, Truss was elected to Parliament in 2010 as one of David Cameron’s ‘A-List’ candidates. In 2012, Truss was promoted to the role of Education Minister, where she is said to have clashed with Liberal Democrats who were also in government at the time.
In 2014, Truss was promoted to the position of Environment Secretary. In this role, Truss cut subsidies for solar farms, calling them ‘a blight on the landscape’.
At the 2014 Conservative Party Conference, Liz Truss’ speech mounted an infamous defence of British cheese.
In a 2016 Cabinet reshuffle, Truss was made Lord Chancellor and Justice Secretary-before leaving the role in 2017 to become Chief Secretary to the Treasury.
Between 2019 and 2021, Truss served as International Trade Secretary taking on the important role of organising post Brexit trade deals with third party countries. She has also served as the government’s Equalities Minister.
Trade Secretary Liz Truss was a ‘Remain’ supporter in the 2016 EU referendum, but in 2017 Truss admitted that she had ‘changed her mind’ on Brexit.
Truss told the BBC’s Daily Politics programme that, ‘I voted to Remain because I was concerned about the economy, but what we’ve seen since the Brexit vote is our economy has done well’.
Truss was an early supporter of Boris Johnson in the 2019 Conservative leadership election.
Truss is a prominent supporter of the free-market and has close ties to a number of neoliberal think-tanks including the Institute of Economic Affairs and the Adam Smith Institute. Both bodies are strong supporters of free trade.
In 2011, while still a backbench Tory MP, Truss founded the ‘Free Enterprise Group’ Parliamentary Group. She provoked controversy in 2012 when in a book co-authored with later fellow Cabinet Ministers, Kwasi Kwarteng and Priti Patel, Truss claimed that, ‘the British are among the worst idlers in the world’.
Since her election in 2010, Truss has been a vocal supporter of both Heathrow expansion and fracking. Representing a rural constituency in Norfolk she has been keen to stress her interest in rural affairs and support for British farming.
How old is Liz Truss?
Elizabeth Mary Truss was born on the 26th of July 1975.
What did Liz Truss do before entering Politics?
Truss was educated at Merton College, Oxford University. Before politics, Truss worked as a Commercial Manager at the oil and gas company, Shell, before becoming Economics Director at the telecommunications company, Cable & Wireless.
Is Liz Truss Married?
Truss is married with two daughters. The family divides their time between Norfolk and London. Truss’ husband, Hugh O’Leary, is an accountant.
How Ambitious is Liz Truss?
Truss initially declared her interest in the Conservative Party leadership in 2019, however, she quickly withdrew and endorsed Boris Johnson. This further indicates that Truss has substantial ambition.
With Truss’ fondness for numbers and her past experience at the Treasury, before becoming Foreign Secretary, she had previously touted as a potential first-female-Chancellor.
Twitter Handle – @trussliz
Facebook Address – @ElizabethTrussSWNorfolk
Personal Website – https://www.elizabethtruss.com