Liz Truss was on Thursday forced to quit as UK prime minister, drawing to a dramatic close 44 days in office which saw her preside over an economic meltdown and catastrophic damage to the ruling Conservative party.
Truss was told to quit by senior party figures on Thursday morning, leaving bitterly divided Tory MPs facing the prospect of having to choose a third prime minister in a matter of months.
Sir Graham Brady, chair of the 1922 committee, met Truss on Thursday morning amid speculation from senior Conservatives that her premiership was drawing to a close.
Government insiders confirmed that Brady, who is responsible for overseeing Tory leadership contests, met Truss in Downing Street at the prime minister’s request.
The meeting was unscheduled and Truss’s allies said she requested the meeting with the “shop steward” of Tory MPs to “take the temperature” of the party after days of chaos.
Jake Berry, Tory chairman, and Therese Coffey, deputy prime minister, were also seen entering Downing St, adding to a sense that the crisis building around Truss’s premiership was coming to a head.
At least a dozen Tory MPs have called on Truss to resign, including Miriam Cates who is a member of the 1922 committee executive. “It seems untenable,” she said. “Yes, I do think it’s time for the prime minister to go.”
Truss’s premiership, which began on September 6, has seen her economic strategy crash and burn, the sacking of her chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng and the forced resignation on Wednesday of home secretary Suella Braverman.
Party discipline has broken down and Jeremy Hunt, the new chancellor, is currently trying to draw up a £40bn package of tax rises and spending cuts to fill a fiscal hole ahead of another fiscal statement on October 31.