Former prime minister Liz Truss has described supporters of LGBT people as “left-wing extremists.”
Truss made the comments at the launch of the Popular Conservatism ‘PopCon’ movement, a new faction of the Conservative Party she is leading, in Westminster on Tuesday (6 February).
The newly-established right-wing group claims it is not challenging current prime minister Rishi Sunak’s leadership, but that it is motivated to lobby him to cut taxes, introduce tougher policies on immigration and pull the UK out of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).
Truss, whose ill-fated premiership in 2022 lasted just 45 days, made several bizarre claims during her speech at the opening event, including that “environmentalists” and those “in favour of supporting LGBT people or groups of ethnic minorities” are “left-wing extremists”.
“I believe the fundamental issue is that for years and years and years, and I think it goes back two decades, Conservatives have not taken on the left-wing extremists,” Truss told an audience at the launch.
Former British Prime Minister Liz Truss speaks at the launch of the ‘Popular Conservatives’ movement (Leon Neal/Getty)
Truss argued that leftists are “taking power away from families and giving it to the state and unelected bodies.” She also criticised the government for “pandering to the anti-capitalists,” remarking that ordinary people believe “the wokery” is “nonsense.”
In her view, the British public no longer “admit” if they are “socialists or communists,” but instead label themselves “environmentalists”.
“They say that they’re in favour of helping people across all communities. They are in favour of supporting LGBT people or groups of ethnic minorities,” Truss added.
In September 2023, Truss called for schools to be banned from allowing transgender pupils to socially transition.
“Transitioning is “not a neutral act” and “therefore it should not be officially sanctioned before a young adult has the full decision-making capability to understand the consequences at the age of 18,” Truss told The Times.
“I do not believe that this contravenes the Equality Act but if there are any legal issues, the government should legislate.”
Following Truss’ humiliating departure as prime minister in October 2022, leading LGBTQ+ activists noted that she would be remembered for her “silence and inaction” on LGBTQ+ rights.
“Liz Truss will be remembered for her many failures, indeed for many in the LGBT+ community she will be known for her silence and inaction on critical matters that have impacted our safety and allowed perpetrators of hate to act with impunity,” Jayne Ozanne, an LGBTQ+ activist who previously sat on the government’s LGBT Advisory Panel, told PinkNews at the time.
“She did nothing to address soaring hate crime figures or progress the urgent need for a ban on conversion practices.”