EXCL Michael Dugher: Why I'm quitting Parliament

Posted On: 
20th April 2017

Michael Dugher has revealed he is quitting Parliament "to make a difference in life outside of politics" and spend more time with his family.

Michael Dugher has become the latest Labour MP to stand down ahead of the general election.
PA Images

Speaking exclusively to PoliticsHome, the former Shadow Cabinet member said he had made the decision to stand down after seven years as an MP "with some sadness".

He said he wished Labour "nothing but the best for the future".

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But in a thinly-veiled swipe at Jeremy Corbyn, he said it must be a party which is "in touch with working class people and one that can get into government so we can actually do something to really help people".

Mr Dugher became the 11th Labour MP to announce he is standing down ahead of the snap election on 8 June, after Fiona MacTaggart and Shadow Northern Ireland and Scottish Secretary Dave Anderson both announced they were quitting earlier today.

The former Shadow Culture Secretary, who has been MP for Barnsley East since 2010, said: "It is with some sadness I can confirm that I will be standing down from Parliament.

"As someone who grew up in a South Yorkshire pit village very close to my Barnsley constituency, I have been proud beyond all words to represent the great people of Barnsley East. I will always be grateful for their support and friendship.

"I have worked for the Labour movement for nearly all of the past 20 years. Throughout that time I have always tried to fight for a Labour party that is in touch with working class people and one that can get into government so we can actually do something to really help people.

"I wish the party and more importantly the people of Barnsley nothing but the best for the future. There are always lots of reasons when you make any big decisions.

"It's time now for me to make a difference in life outside of politics. It's also time that I do what is best for my wife and children, whom I love with all my heart."

Mr Dugher served in Ed Miliband's Shadow Cabinet, and was initially part of Jeremy Corbyn's frontbench team - despite running Andy Burnham's rival leadership campaign.

However, he was sacked in January last year as Mr Corbyn's carried out his first major reshuffle.

It followed a House magazine interview in which he launched an outspoken attack on Ken Livingstone and Momentum, the pro-Corbyn campaign group.

Other Labour MPs to announce they will not contest the general election include Alan Johnson, Iain Wright and Tom Blenkinsop.