Who Is Keir Starmer, The New UK Prime Minister?

Keir Starmer, at 61, emerges as a pivotal figure in British politics, having risen through a career steeped in law and public service. He has been elected as new prime minister of UK.

Sir Keir Starmer, recently elected as the United Kingdom’s Prime Minister, brings a unique blend of personal background and legal expertise to the forefront of British politics. Raised in Oxted, Surrey, he proudly identifies with his working-class roots, shaped by his father’s career as a toolmaker and his mother’s courageous battle with Still’s disease, a rare autoimmune condition. UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, candidate for the Conservative Party in the country’s snap polls on Friday conceded defeat and declared that the “Labour Party has won” the general election, CNN reported. “The Labour Party has won this general election,” Sunak said, adding that he called up Keir Starmer to congratulate him on his victory.

Educated at Reigate Grammar School and later at the University of Leeds and Oxford, Sir Keir broke barriers as the first in his family to attend university, studying law. His legal career focused on human rights, taking him across the globe to defend individuals facing severe penalties, including in the Caribbean and Africa.


The Labour leader often highlights his roots in a “working-class background,” frequently mentioning the “pebble-dash semi” in Oxted, Surrey, where he was raised. His father worked as a toolmaker, while his mother was a nurse who battled Still’s disease, a rare autoimmune disorder that eventually left her unable to speak or walk.

He attended Reigate Grammar School, which transitioned to a private institution two years into his attendance. His tuition was covered by the local council until he turned 16.

He was the first in his family to attend university, studying law at Leeds and later Oxford. In 1987, he qualified as a barrister, specializing in human rights law. His career took him to the Caribbean and Africa, where he defended death row inmates.

In the late 1990s, he provided pro bono services to the McLibel activists, who were sued by McDonald’s for distributing leaflets challenging the company’s environmental practices.

In 2008, he became the Director of Public Prosecutions, the highest-ranking criminal prosecutor in England and Wales.


He began his political journey in 2015 when he was elected as the MP for Holborn and St Pancras in north London. He played a key role in Jeremy Corbyn’s shadow cabinet as the shadow Brexit secretary, where he supported the idea of a second EU referendum.

Following Labour’s significant loss in the 2019 general election, he ran for the party leadership and won in April 2020. In his victory address, he committed to leading Labour “into a new era with confidence and hope.”


Labour has outlined several key policy pledges, including:

Healthcare: Reduce NHS waiting lists by offering 40,000 additional appointments weekly, financed through measures to combat tax avoidance and close tax loopholes.

Immigration: Establish a ‘border security command’ aimed at dismantling people-smuggling operations and preventing illegal small boat crossings.

Housing: Construct 1.5 million new homes by reforming planning laws, and implementing a scheme granting first-time buyers priority access to new housing developments.

Education: Hire 6,500 new teachers, funded by eliminating tax breaks for private schools.


Since October 2021, Labour has consistently led the Conservatives in the polls, holding a lead of around 20 percentage points since early 2023.

During the initial phase of his leadership, Sir Keir struggled to improve Labour’s poor poll performance. A significant by-election defeat in Hartlepool in 2021 spurred a renewed focus on reclaiming voters in the so-called Red Wall—constituencies in the North of England and the Midlands that were traditionally Labour strongholds but swung to the Conservatives in the 2019 election.

This shift in strategy led Sir Keir to abandon previous commitments to abolish university tuition fees and nationalize energy and water companies. Some party members on the left have accused him of betrayal and breaking promises.

Before the dissolution of Parliament for the election, Labour held 205 seats. To secure an outright majority, they would need to win 326 seats.