Tory leadership policy: where do the candidates stand?

In just a few weeks, members of the Conservative party will be deciding on Britain’s next prime minister after Boris Johnson announced last month that he would resign after a wave of resignations from members of his government destroyed his political authority.

The two contenders for the leadership – Liz Truss, foreign minister and current frontrunner, and Rishi Sunak, former chancellor – outlined their respective visions for the country in a series of televised debates and hustings.

During the campaign so far, the candidates have clashed over issues such as tax cuts and aid to help Britons through the cost of living. With inflation at a 40-year high and rising, household energy bills expected to rise to £4,427 in April, and further public sector strikes on the horizon, Johnson’s successor will face some daunting decisions when he leaves. whether it will be announced on September 5.

Below, the Financial Times has listed where each candidate stands in eight key UK policy areas.

Economy

truss

Promised to boost economic growth by introducing tax cuts of more than £30bn a year. Claims Sunak’s policies would plunge Britain into recession. She would reverse his corporate tax hike and introduce a one-year moratorium on the green energy tax to tackle the cost of living. Wants to revise the Bank of England mandate to make sure it’s “tough enough for inflation”.

sunak

Promised to “return to traditional conservative economic values” and denounced Truss’s “fairytale economy”. Will cut taxes once UK gets inflation under control and cut base income tax rate to 19 per cent by 2024. Wants to abolish VAT on domestic energy bills for next year. Warned that it would be a ‘mistake’ to abolish central bank independence on interest rate setting.

Brexit

truss

Architect of Northern Ireland’s protocol law, which would set aside part of Johnson’s Brexit deal regulating trade in the region. Pledged a “bonfire” of red tape in the EU and pledged to scrap all EU-derived legislation by the end of 2023 if it proves to be hampering the UK’s economic growth.

Sunak

Concerns have been raised in cabinet about the economic impact of a row with Brussels over post-Brexit trade arrangements in Northern Ireland. Promised to create a new Brexit delivery department to review existing EU legislation on UK law books.

Education

truss

Promises to reform the industry, including a “new wave” of free schools to replace failing academies and shake up the Oxbridge admissions system, by ensuring that all triple A* students are automatically given the opportunity to apply to the University of Oxford or Cambridge.

sunak

Swore to curb college degrees that “sack students with debt” but fail to improve their earning potential. Promised to introduce a “British Baccalaureate” that would require high school students to study Mathematics and English until they are 18.

Leveling up

truss

Promised to “level the country the conservative way” by promoting regional growth through low taxes, unregulated “investment zones” and the creation of more directly elected mayors. Has pledged to build Northern Powerhouse Rail, a £43 billion line connecting Hull and Liverpool.

sunak

Pledged to continue Johnson’s agenda for tackling regional inequality in the UK, including through the appointment of more directly elected mayors. Would have a minister to level up and make sure the Treasury approves infrastructure projects outside southern England.

Immigration

truss

Will crack down on “terrible” gangs illegally transporting people across the Channel, increase border forces’ workforce by 20 percent and appoint an interior minister to oversee the force. Truss has pledged to pursue more migration partnerships with third countries, such as the Rwanda programme.

Sunak

The former chancellor has drawn up a ten-point plan to secure Britain’s borders. This includes calling on parliament to set an annual limit on the number of refugees entering the UK each year and to create a cross-government “small boat task force” to take control of the crossings. of migrants across the Channel.

net zero

truss

Promised to keep the goal of net zero, but has criticized the goal, saying she wants to “find better ways to deliver net zero” that “doesn’t harm people and businesses.” Is in favor of fracking for which there is local support and criticizes the use of solar panels on agricultural land.

sunak

Committed to the goal of net zero CO2 emissions by 2050. Wants to establish a task force on energy security, deregulation to boost gas production in the North Sea and scale up renewable energy sources such as offshore wind and nuclear power. Also supports fracking in areas where there is support.

Union

truss

A self-described “child of the union” and referred to Scottish Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon as an “attention-seeker”. Wants to give MSPs parliamentary privilege, giving them legal immunity from prosecution for rulings in parliament.

Sunak

Pledged to do “anything and everything” to keep the union, and would expect British ministers to be more visible in Scotland, and wants Holyrood to publish regular data on its performance.

NHS

truss

Will reverse the rise in national insurance to fund social care and reduce the backlog of the NHS. But has also said she would prioritize funding for social care. Wants to review NHS pensions and support doctors and nurses by “eliminating some of the central dictates” and having fewer layers of management in the health service.

sunak

Promised to create a vaccine-style task force to cut red tape. Suggested £10 fines for patients who miss GP and hospital appointments. Committed to create 200 diagnostic hubs by March 2024 to address treatment backlogs. Is expected to stick to the rise in national insurance, which he introduced as chancellor.

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