Liz Truss Slammed By Tory Chairman For Appearing On Right-Wing Podcast

Liz Truss speaking at the 2024 Conservative Political Action Conference in America earlier this year.
Liz Truss speaking at the 2024 Conservative Political Action Conference in America earlier this year. NurPhoto via Getty Images

Liz Truss has been criticised by Tory chairman Richard Holden for appearing on a right-wing podcast.

The former prime minister was interviewed on the Lotus Eaters platform, which was founded by the commentator Carl Benjamin.

Rishi Sunak has also been urged to deselect Truss as a Conservative general election candidate by Labour MP Jess Phillips.

In 2019, Benjamin said he “wouldn’t even rape” Phillips, later adding: “I suppose with enough pressure I might cave, but let’s be honest nobody’s got that much beer”.

In a letter to the prime minister, the Birmingham Yardley MP said: “It is clear that anyone willing to appear on this hateful platform is not suitable to be a candidate for any political party.

“If you have any decency, you will deselect Liz Truss as Conservative candidate for South West Norfolk. Anything less than this will show how weak you are and how far the Conservative Party has sunk.”

Asked for his views on the row on LBC, Holden said: “Well, I must say I’ve never heard of this Carl Benjamin fella before or his show and I was unaware until I just listened to you now, that Liz was appearing on it.

“As you’ve described it to me, I think these comments are just unbelievably vile. And as everybody has said, they are totally appalling. And I’m sure that actually Liz Truss, the former prime minister would agree that those comments are indeed appalling and unacceptable.

“Why on earth she’s appeared on his show, I don’t know. But I can’t really comment on that.”

In a lengthy post on X (formerly Twitter), Benjamin said he had been “attacked and misrepresented” by Jess Phillips.

He said: “We are a popular and mainstream conservative publication, which is well-liked and well-respected by our peers, because of the work we do with them.

“It is natural that a conservative such as Liz Truss would want to speak to us to help facilitate an interesting exchange of ideas and for her to speak directly to the conservative base without fear.

“Why the Conservative Party would even consider taking lectures from a partisan socialist MP like Phillips is too absurd to contemplate.”

HuffPost UK has approached Liz Truss’ spokesman and the Conservative Party for comment.