Jeremy Hunt Is New UK Finance Minister

Jeremy Hunt has been appointed as Liz Truss’s new chancellor after sacking Kwasi Kwarteng today, DGN Online can report.

This shows a stunning reversal of political fortune and a sign that the beleaguered prime minister wants to reach out to other sections of the Conservative party.

Hunt, a former foreign secretary and health secretary, who has twice tried unsuccessfully to become Conservative leader, was named chancellor after Kwasi Kwarteng, in the job for just over five weeks, was sacked by Truss ahead of another U-turn over tax cuts.

A mini-reshuffle also resulted in Chris Philp, Kwarteng’s No 2 as chief secretary to the Treasury, being sacked from his role and moved to the Cabinet Office to become paymaster general.

In a direct job swap, Philp was replaced by Edward Argar.

Hunt, who has been on the backbenches since Boris Johnson became prime minister in 2019, is seen as coming from the more one-nation wing of the party. His appointment indicates Truss wants to broaden her support – and is likely to slow down her rush to introduce tax cuts.

The appointment appears to be a response to criticism from Tory MPs that Truss’s initial cabinet was chosen for loyalty rather than competence and experience, being packed almost entirely by those who supported her in the leadership race.

In the 2019 Tory race to succeed Theresa May, Hunt made it to the final round but was easily beaten by Boris Johnson in the ballot of party members. In July, he came bottom in the first round of MPs’ voting, getting the support of just 18 colleagues.

The reshuffle came just before Truss was due to hold an emergency Downing Street press conference, at which she was set to U-turn on plans set out last month to not raise corporation tax, part of a largely unfunded mini-budget that sparked turmoil in the markets and shredded Truss’s credibility, just weeks into the role.

Both Labour and the Liberal Democrats said Truss now needed to stand down.

Rachel Reeves, the shadow chancellor, said: “We don’t just need a change in chancellor, we need a change in government.”

Source:DGN

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