Liz Truss: Don't blame me for mortgage mayhem after my mini-budget

Liz Truss has refused to take the blame for the mortgage mayhem that hit millions of homeowners following her October 2022 mini-budget.

The former Prime Minister instead accused the Bank of England of “undermining” policy during her 49 days in Number 10.

In an interview with Sky News on Sunday, Ms Truss was asked if she would apologise for the sharp rise in interest rates during her brief and chaotic premiership.

“I question the premise of what you’re asking me, because mortgage rates have gone up across the world,” she said.

“The issues that I faced in office, were issues of not being able to deliver the agenda because of a deep resistance within the establishment.”

She added: “I think it’s wrong to suggest that I’m responsible for British people paying higher mortgages. That is something that has happened in every country in the free world.

“I’m not saying that I got everything absolutely perfect in the way the policy was communicated. But what I am saying is I faced real resistance and actions by the Bank of England that undermine my policy and created the problems in the market.”

Mortgage rates - which had been rising anyway - suddenly shot up in the wake of her chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng’s mini-budget, which included a series of unfunded tax cuts.

Ms Truss, who was in Washington DC to promote her new book, Ten Years To Save the West, did acknowledge that her government had lost the confidence of financial markets following the mini-budget.

She also said she regretted not meeting Bank of England governor Andrew Bailey at the time.

“I actually had a meeting set up - I wanted to meet him,” she said. “But I was advised that would be a bad idea. And perhaps I shouldn’t have taken that advice.

“But that advice came from the cabinet secretary and what I didn’t want to do is further exacerbate the [market] problems.

“In retrospect, yes, I probably should have spoken directly to the governor of the Bank of England at the time.”

Speaking about the aftermath of the mini-budget, Ms Truss said: “It’s fair to say that the government did not have the confidence of the markets…

“But if you have organisations within the state, like the Bank of England, like the Office of Budget Responsibility, who are pretty clear to people they don’t support the policies that are being pursued and are essentially undermining those policies, then it is difficult to command the confidence in the markets - because the markets look to the government for that leadership.”

Appearing on Sunday Morning With Trevor Phillips, Britain's shortest-serving prime minister insisted she does not want to "reinstate" herself as leader, a week after saying she had "unfinished business" with the Conservative Party.

Ms Truss had previously declined to rule out standing to be Tory leader, saying it was "never wise to rule anything out in politics".

She said her new book was "not trying to reinstate myself as prime minister".

Asked directly whether she would like to return to Downing Street, she said: "No."