Liz Truss distances herself from partying Tories Getting trade deals over the line

Liz Truss says she did not attend the Tory Xmas parties last year

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Liz Truss shunned questions about Boris Johnson’s alleged Christmas get-togethers with other politicians at Downing Street on December 18 last year, pointing out that her attentions at the time were completely switched to “getting trade deals done”. She insisted conclusions about any potential breach of Covid rules in the run-up to last Christmas would have to wait for the end of the investigation from Cabinet Secretary Simon Case. Earlier this week, the Foreign Secretary leapt to the Government’s defence after rumours of a Christmas party during lockdown last year came to light.

Speaking to BBC’s Political Thinking, Ms Truss said: “The Cabinet Secretary is, I am sure, investigating all these questions. We will see the results of all that in due course.

“But last Christmas I was spending my time getting trade deals over the line.

“We had a lot of deals to get done by the 31st of December.

“That was my focus.”

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“We were busy working on the trade deals”

Ms Truss has emerged as a very popular figure among Tory Party members for work as International Trade Secretary as the British Government negotiated a Brexit deal with the European Union.

Her biggest achievements include reaching a trade deal with Australia and solving the Airbus/Boeing dispute over aircraft subsidies with the United States.

But her detractors highlight her inability to improve the UK’s trade ambitions after leaving the UK.

Liz Truss says she did not attend the Tory Xmas parties last year

Even though she reached a deal with Australia, she is yet to do the same with the United States.

Despite promising early signs that the UK’s exit from the EU would make things easier, she did not succeed in her mission to sign a UK-US deal.

She said in September that a deal is not the “be-all and end-all” of all agreements.

Ms Truss then refused to guarantee that the two countries will strike a deal by 2030.

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As the Christmas party row rages on, Ms Truss has emerged as a potential successor to Boris Johnson.

BBC Political Editor Laura Kuenssberg said: “There are absolutely conversations about what life after Boris Johnson might look like.

“A very experienced MP said to me, ‘Look stage 1 of the leadership transition is where everybody agrees that the Prime Minister might be running out of the road is complete.’ “

“We’re at stage 2 where we talk about who, how, and when. But stage 2 often takes a very long time. “

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