Three days later Liz Truss’ government introduced one of the most fiscally irresponsible financial statements in British history.
Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng’s “fiscal event” contained dramatic tax and spending changes of the kind that have traditionally always been regarded as part of a budget. But acknowledging the announcement as a budget would have brought with it a series of constraints which seem to have been unwelcome to Truss and to Kwarteng. Any budget statement is by convention accompanied by several days of parliamentary debate, during which it can be scrutinised in detail by MPs in the Commons chamber. Even more important, a budget would have to be accompanied by fiscal analysis from the Office of Budget Responsibility, the independent body tasked with costing the consequences of budget decisions. By calling the announcement a “fiscal event” Truss and Kwarteng avoided these two outcomes.
Truss was either lying to BBC viewers, or did not know what she was talking about. Probably the latter, though impossible to be certain about this.
We emailed Liz Truss’ office offering her the chance to respond. The email was received, but no reply.