8 things that lasted longer than Liz Truss as prime minister

Liz Truss with: Geri Halliwell, Cher and the EastEnders title card

Liz Truss’s resignation makes her the UK’s shortest-ever serving prime minister.

Truss threw in the towel on Thursday (20 October), after just 45 days in office. She’ll be replaced no later than Friday (28 October) following a speedy leadership election, which looks increasingly likely to be a Boris Johnson vs Rishi Sunak grudge match.

The previous record-holder for shortest-serving PM, George Canning, was in office for 119 days before he died of tuberculosis, and is mostly remembered for having an actual duel with the war secretary, while he was foreign secretary.

Truss is set to comfortably beat his record, with her short premiership also failing to compare with these seven tenures.

The combined runtime of every Eastenders episode

Eastenders has been going on for a long time – for 37 years, in fact! Every episode of the weekly BBC soap opera combined would take you a whopping 116 days to complete, more than double Truss’ prime ministership.

The show first aired on 19 February 1985, with over 13 million viewers tuning in to check out the broadcasting giant’s answer to Coronation Street. It has become a mainstay for UK residents ever since – the same can’t be said about a certain former prime minister.

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Interestingly, Eastenders’ top-viewed episode – a December 1986 episode in which character Den Watts serves his wife with divorce papers – is currently the most-watched television programme episode in the UK with over 30 million viewers.

While viewership ratings are not yet clear on Truss’ resignation, it’s incredibly unlikely that it would have reached this level. After all, Den Watts ending his chaotic marriage with Angie was far more shocking than Liz Truss’ predictable departure.

The total weeks that Last Christmas by Wham! topped the charts

George Michael in a denim shirt and white jeans and Andrew Ridgeley in a tartan suit
Andrew Ridgeley (R) and George Michael (1963-2016) of Wham. (Michael Putland/Getty Images)

Last Christmas is one of the most recognisable modern Christmas songs in the western world and its total time in the charts represents that.

In total, the 1984 Wham! spent 31 weeks in the top 10 of the UK charts, surpassing Truss’ time as prime minister by at least 165 days.

If a song about how things never last might be a bit too on the nose – there are plenty of other hits that have outlived Truss’ time in office.

In fact, according to the Official Charts page as of 20 October, 7 of the current top 10 tracks have been on the charts longer than Truss was in the position.

Cher’s ‘Believe’

Cher’s “Believe” spent 12 weeks in the UK top 10 and an incredible 31 weeks in the charts – more than four times as long as Truss spent in No 10.

Seven of those weeks were spent at number one. If she makes it to Friday, Truss will have just about been prime minister for longer – but let’s be honest, she’ll never have the same impact.

Geri Halliwell’s solo career

When she wasn’t taking photos with Nadine Dorries, singer-songwriter Geri Halliwell enjoyed a successful post-Spice Girls solo career spanning almost seven years.

The artist, better known as Ginger Spice, embarked on her solo career in 1999 after leaving the girl group a year prior.

During her time, she released three solo albums, enjoyed several number-one singles including Mi Chico Latino and Lift Me Up, and held the record for most number ones by a British female solo artist for 14 years.

She eventually ended her solo career in 2006, easily surpassing Truss’ career as prime minister despite telling the Conservative to “go for it!”

That one raw onion you’ve forgotten about in the cupboard

If you’ve ever stumbled upon a loose raw onion in the back of your kitchen cupboard just before it reaches the expiration date, then congratulations! You’ve officially had that onion longer than Liz Truss held the title of prime minister.

The typical shelf life for a raw onion – if stored in dry, room temperature conditions, is typically around two months depending on various preserving factors – none of which should include dealing with Suella Braverman.

Additionally, that raw onion has probably done the same amount for LGBTQ+ rights in the UK while inside your cupboard as Truss did while prime minister.

Liz Truss’ Conservative leadership campaign

Liz Truss speaks during a Tory leadership electing hustings
Liz Truss’ new Tory government must “reframe trans healthcare as a public health issue”, trans youth charity Mermaids said. (Getty)

In a hilariously depressing observation, it turns out Liz Truss’ bid to become Conservative leader was actually longer than her time as leader of the government.

Truss announced her leadership bid on 10 July after Boris Johnson’s resignation, quickly becoming a frontrunner against Rishi Sunak.

During that time, she made a hefty amount of anti-trans remarks and gave into harmful rhetoric, including saying that trans women aren’t real women.

She eventually won the bid 56 days later on 5 September – four days longer than her expected time as prime minister.

The inaction on the conversion therapy ban by the Conservative government

It has been several months since the government has addressed the years-long planned conversion therapy ban – longer than prime minister Truss spent in Downing Street.

After a muddled attempt at dropping a ban on conversion therapy, then-prime minister Boris Johnson quickly clarified in March that the legislation would be passed, but that it would not include trans and non-binary people.

Since then, a mixture of radio silence and pure governmental chaos has left LGBTQ+ people in the dark as to where their rights lie on the legislative table.

While Truss could have kept her promise to pass the ban during her blink-of-an-eye time as Conservative leader, there was once again complete silence on the matter.

The tenure of every other prime minister before her

Liz Truss’ run as prime minister is without a doubt record-breaking, much in the same way that the worrying record-breaking summers in the UK foreshadow a grim road ahead for the country.

The only prime minister to even come close to Truss’ shockingly short stay at No.10 is George Canning, who died 119 days into his tenure.

Of the eight leaders of government who lasted less than a year, two fell suddenly ill, three were forcibly replaced, one lost due to an election, and two, including Truss, resigned.

Additionally, Truss is the only PM in the 21st century to have served less than a year and the only in the UK’s history to not make it at least 100 days.

Honourable mention: The shelf life of a head of lettuce

While the entire country has become ecstatic over the Daily Star head of lettuce that beat Truss’ tenure in government, the former prime minister did in fact outlast the typical lifespan of the vegetable.

Un-refrigerated lettuce usually lasts from one to three weeks before it goes bad. While the lettuce in question did survive to see Truss’ resignation, it was not bought at the start of her appointment to the position.