Sunak needs policy rethink warns Rees-Mogg with Tories on verge of civil war

Jacob Rees-Mogg lists three ‘huge’ Brexit benefits

Jacob Rees-Mogg has warned the Prime Minister that he needs to overhaul his policies if he wants to win the next election.

Speaking to, the former Business Secretary, who resigned after Liz Truss was ousted as Prime Minister last year, took aim at the Net Zero policies on climate change.

Mr Rees-Mogg had hoped to review the policies when he was responsible for them but because Ms Truss’s government only lasted 49 days he did not have time.

He spoke to at the National Conservatism conference which is taking place in Westminster this week.

He said: “Of course, the Conservatives can always win but it depends on our policies.”

But Mr Rees-Mogg went on: “He [the Prime Minister] really needs to take a look at our Net Zero policies.

“They have made us far too dependent on energy from one source [Russia] because we wanted to look virtuous about not extracting any fossil fuel even though we are using it.

“That is why we had an energy crisis, it wasn’t a shortage of fossil fuel supply it was because it was coming from a single source.”

The war in Ukraine then as a result led to a spike in energy costs which forced the Government to introduce a massive package of measures to help people and businesses pay the bills.

The cost of it undermined Ms Truss’s growth agenda and mini-budget and then saw her administration collapse.

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Mr Rees-Mogg also warned that the inflated cost of energy through Net Zero policies is “literally killing our steel industry.”

It came as he also spoke out against high taxes in the Sunak government and the decision to reverse Brexit opportunities by not scrapping EU red tape.

Mr Rees-Mogg had pointed out that the Prime Minister in his summer leadership video had promised to shred EU laws.

He told “I spoke so strongly on the retained EU law bill because that was a specific promise and I don’t think politicians should make promises they break lightly.”

On tax, he was critical of the way the number of people paying the 40p higher rate of income tax has quadrupled since the 1990s.

He said: “It’s a real problem that fiscal drag is any government’s favourite stealth tax.

“When inflation is high, people really begin to see a decline in living standards. This is going to become more of a political problem.

“It’s a stealth tax that has to go. But we cannot have unfunded tax cuts. There has to be spending restraint. This has turned from a tax on high earners to one on middle incomes.”

Mr Rees-Mogg’s comments come as former allies of Boris Johnson including Nadine Dorries and Priti Patel have been highly critical of the Government.

Over the weekend, Ms Patel told the Conservative Democratic Organisation that the coup to remove Mr Johnson last year and a failure of the Sunak government to listen had led to a record defeat for the party.

But in his interview, Mr Rees-Mogg urged colleagues who have been thinking about asking for a vote of confidence in their leader not to try to organise another coup.

He warned: “Anything else [other than Sunak as leader] would be fruit loon territory.

“Every day we see new ideas from Starmer about what he would do.

“That should focus Tory minds – Sir Keir Starmer is much worse than Rishi Sunak and we should support the Prime Minister.”

However, he added: “That does not mean we shouldn’t discuss policy and hold him [Mr Sunak] to account.”

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