Thursday, 3 May 2007

After Blair Announces His Resignation Next Week , Will Also Stand Down as an MP?

Tony Blair is preparing to stand down as an MP after he resigns as Prime Minister, rather than remain in Parliament according to credible reports from Westminister today. The speculation about Mr Blair’s future was triggered by a Press Association report that it had learned Mr Blair was planning to make the announcement on 11 May, a day after he gives a date for leaving Number 10. He has already made clear that he is looking for a life outside politics when he leaves No 10.

Blair is known to want to cash in on his political stature as soon as possible. He has a hefty mortgage on his £3.6 million town house in London, which is being refurbished after the Blairs bought the £800,000 mews house behind it.
Downing Street has thus far denied that Blair will stand down as an MP. Mr Blair’s official spokesman said: “The announcement next week will be solely about the Prime Minister as leader of the Labour Party. He has made no decision whatsoever to stand down as an MP and very firmly remains MP for Sedgefield and proud of it. He is simply going to talk next week about his position as leader of the Labour Party. "

I am the first to support Blair resigning as Prime Minister but to stand down as an MP immediately after shows his true character. Blair is effectively saying, like a child told to give someone else a turn, "if I can't be the leader, I don't want to play." It would be a break with precedent for him to quit as an MP after leaving No 10. His immediate predecessors, including John Major, Margaret Thatcher, James Callaghan and Harold Wilson all remained in the Commons at least until the following general election. Labour MPs predicted he could tour the world lecture circuit, particularly in the United States, write his memoirs and pick up lucrative boardroom directorships. I'm sure these are far more interesting prospects for Mr. Blair than to continue to serve his constituents.

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