Tory conference live: Liz Truss prepares to make keynote speech

Tory conference live: Liz Truss prepares to make keynote speech to try and unite warring Tories as she tells members ‘disruption’ caused by her tax plans will boost economic growth

Follow MailOnline’s live coverage of the final day of the Conservative Party conference today as Liz Truss prepares to address warring Tories.

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James Cleverly has declined to say whether benefits should rise in line with inflation and said colleagues should not ‘pre-announce’ the decision at the Tory conference.

The Foreign Secretary told Times Radio: ‘What we have got to do is look at the inflation figures that have come out recently.

‘Obviously, the Chancellor and his Treasury team, in conjunction with the Prime Minister and ultimately through the Cabinet, will look at what the package of support is needed and then what we will do is we will announce that in the early part of next year, as we always do.

‘What I’m not going to do, and what I don’t think colleagues should do, is try and pre-announce what the Chancellor is going to do here at party conference’.

Asked about Government colleagues including Penny Mordaunt expressing their view on the matter, he said: ‘Ultimately, we are all going to be bound by collective decision making and collective agreement.

‘So once that decision is made, that’s what we are going to deploy and my view is it’s better and easier, more appropriate, to feed your views and ideas in in the normal way, which is through Cabinet through Cabinet committees.’

Liz Truss’s cabinet members openly feuded about the government’s direction, with Commons Leader Penny Mordaunt openly saying she would not support a real-terms cut to benefits.

Other Tories also criticised the policy – although it has not been officially announced – including Priti Patel and former party leader Iain Duncan Smith.

Home Secretary Suella Braverman used her conference speech to criticise the government’s U-turn on the 45p rate of tax earlier this week.

She also accused opponents of the tax cut including Michael Gove of staging a ‘coup’ to block the policy. Ms Braverman’s comments attracted criticism from International Trade Secretary Kemi Badenoch. 

There was also some confusion over when Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng would unveil the government’s spending plans – originally due to be published on November 23 – but it has now been confirmed they will be brought forward following the backlash to his mini-budget last month.

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