45 Days As PM Qualifies Truss For $129,000 A Year For Life
Despite serving as prime minister of the United Kingdom for a mere 45 days before resigning in humiliation, Liz Truss can now tap a lifetime allowance of up to $129,000 a year.
The “Public Duty Costs Allowance,” which is available to all former prime ministers, isn’t a pension. Rather, it’s described by the British government as “reimbursement of incurred expenses for necessary office costs and secretarial costs arising from their special position in public life.”
While Theresa May has taken about half the allowance, John Major, Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and David Cameron have all tapped nearly the entire maximum. Figures for Boris Johnson aren’t available yet. The allowance was introduced in 1991, following Margaret Thatcher’s resignation. Blair has received about $1.12 million so far.
As you might expect, many British feathers are ruffled by the prospect of such a stream of income for the shortest-serving prime minister in British history. Opposition figures are naturally among the most vocal…such as Liberal Democrats spokeswoman Christine Jardine:
“‘Liz Truss will forever be known as the 50-day prime minister. There is no way that she should be permitted to access the same £115,000 a year for life fund as her recent predecessors — all of whom served for well over two years,” said Jardine.
“For Truss to walk off into the sunset with a potential six figure dividend, while leaving the British public to suffer, would be unconscionable.”
Not that this seems likely anytime soon — if ever — but Truss wouldn’t be eligible to tap the allowance while serving as Leader of the Opposition.
Truss’s resignation came after a risky plan to cut taxes and boost spending caused turmoil on financial markets, forcing her to backtrack and her political authority to disintegrate. The Tory Party is scrambling to choose a successor, with an accelerated process that’s expected to finish by Friday, Oct. 28 at the latest.
This post was originally published at Zero Hedge
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