FORMER foreign secretary David Miliband yesterday said he would step down as Labour MP, triggering a byelection in the South Shields constituency he has held since 2001.
The 47-year-old will take over at the International Rescue Committee, a New York based charity that responds to humanitarian crises, taking over from current head Dr George Rupp.
Miliband declined to take up a frontbench role in his brother’s government, to whom he narrowly lost Labour’s 2010 leadership election. David, the older brother, won more votes from Labour MPs and MEPs, as well as securing more support from the party’s members. However, Ed trumped him with union votes, and won with 50.65 per cent of the vote in the final round, as against David’s 49.35 per cent.
South Shields has not returned a Conservative representative in any of the 15 elections since it was founded in 1832, and even after a 6.4 per cent swing away from Labour in 2010, the party had an 11,109 majority.