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Truss and Johnson wanted to be Prime Minister more than they wanted to serve people says Christian MP

by Donna Birrell

Christian MP Tim Farron has accused Liz Truss and Boris Johnson of putting their ambition before the good of the country.

In an interview with Premier, the MP for Westmorland and Lonsdale accused Ms Truss, who resigned as Prime Minister on Thursday, as lacking wisdom. 
He also said Boris Johnson, who is believed to be sounding out supporters ahead of a possible bid for the top job, was not the right person to provide wise and stable leadership.

He told Premier: "I've seen lots of prime ministers and lots of interesting developments over my time, the end of Blair, the end of Brown, the coalition government, Brexit and Theresa May and Boris Johnson. It feels like news just speeds up. But the problem is it's not a soap opera, although it can be entertaining. 

"What's actually happening is that millions of people are finding that they can't afford the mortgage or the rent, or to feed their kids or to pay for the energy costs, or to get themselves to work at all. It is heart-breaking. There are areas where people who used to donate to food banks are now going to food banks to use them. That slide into poverty has happened very quickly.

"Not all of it is down to the actions of this government, let's be fair, but some of it is down to what I would say is unwise decisions that people who want to play politics, rather than want to serve people.

"There's a lot of selfishness, of ego and wanting to be important in politics. I think there's also the desire just to achieve the most that you can in life. You see life as a game where he or she gets the most wins. That's not just the most money, but the most titles, the most profile amongst power, all that sort of thing. 

"I think one of the reasons why a Christian perspective on politics is so important, is that we can step back and think that you can take none of this with you. It's important, but all of it is temporary. God has given us politics and government and the issues that arise from it, for a reason for us to serve within that context. But it is not given so we can lord it over other people and just feel pleased with ourselves."

Liz Truss and Boris Johnson are known to admire former Prime Ministers Margaret Thatcher and Winston Churchill. But Tim Farron said they fell short of their idols:

"Margaret Thatcher and Winston Churchill were complex people with some good things and some bad things about them. If you're trying to copy them, you don't get underneath the bonnet of who they actually were. That was certainly part of the problem with Liz truss and Boris Johnson. They wanted to be Prime Minister and they wanted to be like people they highly admired, perhaps more than they wanted to serve people.

"I hope I'm not being unfair in that. I'm trying to put all my party political wants to one side, because what the country needs is stability and wise leadership. I don't want to be unpleasant about the guy, but I honestly don't think that's Boris Johnson. I don't think Liz Truss told any porkies (lies) that I'm aware of, but she lacked wisdom.

"Wisdom comes basically from humility. True wisdom for us as Christians is approaching the throne of grace and is listening to what God has to tell us."

Former Conservative Attorney General Dominic Grieve, who's also a Christian has also called for wise counsel for those in government.

He said: "What's the common good in all this? Who is it that will try to benefit the people of this country?  We're living in very uncertain times. There's chaos on the international scene as well as a war in Ukraine. People want security and they want to be able to lead their lives and peace. Good Government is providing that. Wise counsel for those who are in government over them, that's what they need.
"If they don't want to have a general election, it is incumbent on them to put together a government which has some credibility, and lasts. You can't have a situation in which the King's government is simply in constant and continuous chaos."

Anyone wanting to become the next Conservative Party leader and Prime Minister needs 100 Tory MPs to back them by Monday - with Ms Truss' replacement in post by Friday 28th October.


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