Liz Truss will not make a year as Lord Chancellor, Joshua Rozenberg predicts

She’s unlikely to survive post-election reshuffle

Lord Chancellor Liz Truss cannot bounce back from the devastating criticism she’s endured in recent months and will not make one year in the Cabinet post.

These are the thoughts of Joshua Rozenberg, a top legal affairs commenter who last year became the first ever journalist to take silk.

He reckons Truss will be booted out of the Cabinet come June in a reshuffle expected to take place shortly after Prime Minister Theresa May’s forecasted general election victory. Writing for the Law Society Gazette, he said Truss is “surely” in the firing line.

Though Rozenberg thinks she’s a “likeable, approachable politician” with “clear ideas”, Truss’s short time in the government post has been undeniably marred by controversy.

Perhaps the most notable is that ‘ENEMIES OF THE PEOPLE’ headline (pictured below) and the Justice Secretary’s lack of response to it. Here, Truss was slammed by lawyers for failing to shield the judges involved in the Brexit litigation against the wrath of the tabloid newspapers.

Truss has insisted it’s not her job to tell the free press what they should write. On this Rozenberg agreed with Truss, but added that it is her job to stand up for the judiciary, writing:

[W]hat she was being asked to do was to defend the independence of the judiciary, as she had sworn to do on her appointment. A more honest answer would have been to admit she had been poorly advised.

More recently Truss was lambasted by the Lord Chief Justice, the head of the judiciary. He took issue with (among other things) her understanding of new rules surrounding pre-recorded evidence in rape cases and her handling of the ‘ENEMIES OF THE PEOPLE’ hoo-ha. On the latter, he went as far as to describe her as “completely and utterly wrong in the view she takes.”

A ‘judiciary vs government’ clash like this doesn’t happen very often. Rozenberg — who writes regularly for Legal Cheek — knows this, and concludes his latest opinion piece by saying:

It is hard to see how Truss can survive measured and devastating criticism like this from the most senior judge in England and Wales.

If May “is attuned to the views of those with whom the Lord Chancellor must maintain a close working relationship”, Rozenberg said, Truss as Justice Secretary will be no more come mid-June.

Rumours about Truss being ousted from her Cabinet post have been swirling for some weeks now; Rozenberg’s support certainly gives them more gravitas. This may well be music to our readers’ ears. A whopping 88% of our Twitter followers think Truss is “a rubbish Lord Chancellor” who deserves to be given the boot.

For all the latest news, features, events and jobs, sign up to Legal Cheek’s weekly newsletter here.