May to remain MP after standing down as Prime Minister
Theresa May has said that she will remain a sitting Conservative MP for her Maidenhead constituency after vacating the premiership.
May was speaking to the Commons during Prime Minister’s Questions when she revealed that she would retire to the backbenches after leaving Number Ten.
Responding to a question from Labour MP Barry Sheerman about her future, May said: “I will indeed be staying in the Chamber of the House of Commons because I will continue as the member of Parliament for my constituency.”
Sheerman had called upon May to remain in the Commons to “give some of the people who will take over a bit of the medicine that they have given her”, rather than “cutting and running”.
May has sat as MP for the Berkshire constituency since 1997 and is set to leave office at the end of July, with the search for her successor already underway.
Her predecessor, David Cameron, had also iterated his intentions to remain an MP after stepping down as Prime Minister following the EU referendum of 2016. He quit Parliament completely before the end of the year, saying he did not wish to become a focal point for Brexit-related arguments nor impede his successor in any way.
The last Conservative Prime Minister prior to Cameron, Sir John Major, also opted to remain in parliament as a backbench MP after conceding his premiership in the 1997 general election. He would go on to serve a full parliamentary term.
Former foreign secretary Boris Johnson is touted as the frontrunner to succeed May as Prime Minister, while reigning Home Secretary Sajid Javid launched his campaign to become Conservative leader today.