Britain's outgoing Prime Minister, David Cameron with his wife Samantha, waves in front of number 10 Downing Street, on his last day in office as Prime Minister, in central London, on July 13, 2016.
Stefan Wermuth—Reuters
September 12, 2016 10:43 AM EDT

Former British Prime Minister David Cameron is to give up his seat in the country’s House of Commons, leaving behind parliamentary politics for the foreseeable future.

Cameron, currently Conservative member of parliament for the seat of Witney in Oxfordshire, announced he would stand down on Monday. He has held the seat since 2001.

Cameron announced his resignation as Prime Minister on the morning of June 24, having failed to convince the country to vote to remain in the European Union. He was succeeded by Theresa May in July.

The former Prime Minister reportedly said in June that he would remain on the back benches of the House of Commons — i.e. stay an MP but not seek to join May’s cabinet — saying that he would be an “obedient backbencher.”

His departure will trigger a by-election for the vacant seat, an off-year contest which is often seen as a test of the strength of the government and its opposition.

However, the constituency is considered a safe Conservative seat. It has only been held by the Labour Party once, in 1999, when Shaun Woodward MP switched parties from the Tories to the Labour Party, which was then in power.


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