Dominic Raab, former Deputy Prime Minister and Conservative MP for Esher and Walton, will step down at the next general election due to the “increasing concerns over the last few years about the pressure the job has placed” on his young family.
His decision was confirmed in a letter sent on Friday, May 19, to the local party’s group chairperson Peter Szanto. The announcement comes a month after he stood down as Deputy PM after the results of a bullying investigation into his conduct were handed to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.
Mr Raab was first elected in May 2010 with an 18,593 majority, although this was cut to just 2,743 in the May 2019 election.
As MP, he served as Deputy Prime Minister, Lord Chancellor, and Secretary of State for Justice.
He was also the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union from July to November 2018. He is married with two children.
His resignation letter, which the Local Democracy Service has seen, read:
I am writing to let you know of my decision to step down at the next General Election.
It has been a huge honour to represent the Conservatives, since 2010, in this wonderful constituency.
Thank you for your steadfast support and tireless efforts, alongside all the teamwork and hard graft put in by our superb officers, Councillors and members.
As we have discussed, I have become increasingly concerned over the last few years about the pressure the job has placed on my young family.
I will continue to carry out all my responsibilities to my constituents, and provide every support in campaigning, so that we may win here next year – which I am confident we can do under this Prime Minister’s leadership.
In April this year, Mr Raab quit as Deputy Prime Minister after a report looking into bullying allegations was delivered to Downing Street.
The Esher and Walton MP announced his resignation via a statement and said he would keep his word if any findings of bullying were found.
The inquiry, conducted by lawyer Adam Tolley KC, upheld two of the allegations against Mr Raab.
His decision now to not stand as an MP was greeted with “deep regret” by the group chair who said Mr Raab had “the full support of the Association to continue as our candidate”.
Mr Szanto said that “on a personal level” he knew of the sacrifices Mr Raab and his family had made but that his commitment to the residents of Esher and Walton had “always been outstanding”.
The Esher and Walton Conservative Association has since been in touch with Conservative campaign headquarters about the selection of a new parliamentary candidate although at this stage no timetable has been given.