Brighton MP Caroline Lucas has slammed a “government by gimmick” approach after the King’s Speech earlier today.

King Charles III officially opened parliament earlier today and announced the government agenda for the next year including a gradual ban on smoking and new oil and gas projects.

Now, the Green MP has criticised the speech and the government’s plans calling it “full of gimmicks and cynical political game-playing”.

She also called for a general election to “end this damage once and for all”.

The Argus: Caroline LucasCaroline Lucas

Reacting to the speech, Ms Lucas wrote: “When people are crying out for a serious legislative agenda – to reduce the cost of living, tackle the climate emergency, and guarantee warm and secure homes – what we got instead was Government by gimmick.

“The PM's plans for annual oil and gas licensing round won’t improve our energy security or cut energy bills, as his own energy secretary accidentally admitted yesterday – but they will wreck our climate and lead to this Government handing over billions in tax breaks to already mega-rich fossil fuel giants.


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“Also caught in the crosshairs of Sunak’s culture wars, a whole host of vital legislative measures were shamefully omitted – ditching the long overdue ‘conversion therapy’ ban, and an end to no-fault evictions being fudged.

“And the King must have found the PM’s words sticking in his throat as he had to read out a catalogue of nature-wrecking measures in this speech – which we know this issue is so close to his heart, but clearly couldn’t be further from his government’s.

The Argus: King Charles and Queen CamillaKing Charles and Queen Camilla (Image: PA)

“This King’s Speech – full of gimmicks and cynical political game-playing – shows that Rishi Sunak has no intention to govern the country. His zombie government deserves to be buried – only a general election now will end this damage once and for all.”

The ceremonial King’s Speech marks the official opening of parliament for the forthcoming political year.

The speech sets out the government’s plans for the forthcoming year.

Other plans announced include tougher sentences for murderers.

The Prime Minister insisted he has “turned the corner” to put the country on a better path as he used the King’s Speech to set out a pre-election stall containing challenges for Sir Keir Starmer.

In his first State Opening of Parliament as monarch, Charles had to detail legislation mandating annual oil and gas licensing for the North Sea – which the Conservatives hope will draw a political dividing line with the Labour leader.

The King, a long-term champion of environmental causes, said the new fossil fuel fields will support the transition to net zero by 2050 “without adding undue burdens on households”.

Charles paid tribute to the late Queen’s “legacy of service and devotion” and said ministers will focus on “difficult but necessary long-term decisions”, as he read out the Government’s legislative priorities in the first King’s Speech in seven decades.

With a general election expected next year, the Prime Minister put a series of criminal justice proposals at the centre of the first such speech he has overseen from No 10.