David Cameron’s Unexpected Role as UK Foreign Policy Head Post-Brexit: An Analysis

by Lucas Garcia
David Cameron Return

David Cameron’s appointment as the foreign secretary in the recent UK government reshuffle marks a notable political resurgence. The former Prime Minister, who led the ‘remain’ campaign in the 2016 Brexit referendum and subsequently stepped down from politics, has made an unconventional return. His comeback as an unelected member of the House of Lords, a deviation from the norm, has raised questions regarding accountability.

In a statement, Cameron expressed his commitment to public service despite the unusual nature of his return. “While it’s atypical for a former prime minister to re-enter government this way, my dedication to public service remains steadfast,” he said.

This move by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak places Cameron in a distinct group of former British premiers who have assumed lesser roles in the government. His return, considering his controversial Brexit legacy, has sparked debate about Sunak’s judgment.

Reviewing Cameron’s Career and His Return:


Cameron, an Oxford graduate and ex-public relations executive, guided the Conservatives to victory in 2010 after 13 years of Labour dominance. His six-year tenure as Prime Minister was marked by a coalition with the Liberal Democrats and a push for ‘compassionate Conservatism’, attempting to reposition the party. However, his tenure is predominantly remembered for stringent austerity measures and the consequential Brexit referendum.

Britain’s austerity policies under Cameron significantly affected healthcare and education sectors, following the 2008 economic downturn. His decision to hold an EU membership referendum, aimed at appeasing Conservative dissenters and countering the UK Independence Party, culminated in his political downfall. The ‘leave’ camp triumphed with 52% of the vote, paving the way for the UK’s eventual departure from the EU in 2020, a decision whose ramifications are still felt, especially in Northern Ireland.


Cameron’s tenure witnessed strengthened economic ties between the UK and China, heralding a ‘golden era’ in bilateral relations. However, his approach towards China is now viewed critically, especially in the context of increasing global security concerns. Sunak has openly criticized Cameron’s stance on China as overly simplistic.

In foreign policy, Cameron faced setbacks, such as the rejection of his proposal for military intervention in Syria by his own party members and the opposition.


Cameron was later embroiled in a lobbying scandal involving Greensill Capital, sparking criticism and calls for stricter lobbying regulations.


Sunak’s office justifies Cameron’s appointment, highlighting his extensive global experience. However, some analysts view this as a risky move by Sunak, potentially signaling a shortage of suitable candidates within his party. Cameron’s appointment has received mixed reactions, with some praising his experience and others questioning the implications of his role as an unelected official.


Concerns have been raised about Cameron’s accountability, given his role as a Lord in the House of Lords rather than as an elected Member of Parliament. This unusual situation limits his exposure to direct questioning in the House of Commons, leading to criticisms from opposition figures and discussions about ensuring effective scrutiny of his actions in the current international climate.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about David Cameron Return

Why has David Cameron returned to government as the UK’s foreign policy chief?

David Cameron’s return to a prominent government role as the UK’s foreign policy chief follows Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s cabinet reshuffle. Despite his controversial legacy, especially regarding Brexit, Cameron has been chosen for his extensive experience and knowledge in global diplomacy and politics.

What concerns have been raised about Cameron’s appointment?

Concerns about David Cameron’s appointment center on his lack of current elected status, as he will serve as an appointed Lord in the House of Lords, and his controversial political legacy, particularly his role in the Brexit referendum and subsequent austerity measures.

How does Cameron’s current role compare with his previous tenure as Prime Minister?

Cameron’s current role as foreign policy chief is a step down from his previous position as Prime Minister. This return to a lesser governmental role is rare for former British prime ministers and marks a significant moment in his political career.

What impact did Cameron’s policies have during his time as Prime Minister?

During his tenure as Prime Minister, Cameron implemented stringent austerity measures in response to the 2008 economic crisis, affecting healthcare, education, and social welfare. His decision to hold the Brexit referendum, which led to the UK’s decision to leave the EU, remains a defining aspect of his legacy.

More about David Cameron Return

  • David Cameron’s Political Career
  • Cameron’s Return and Brexit Legacy
  • UK’s Foreign Policy under Cameron
  • Analysis of Cameron’s Austerity Measures
  • Impact of Brexit Referendum
  • Cameron and UK-China Relations
  • Cameron’s Lobbying Controversy
  • Sunak’s Cabinet Reshuffle and Cameron’s Role
  • Cameron’s Impact on UK’s International Relations
  • Accountability in UK Politics: Cameron’s Case

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Emma Thompson November 14, 2023 - 3:10 am

this is a good summary of events, but lacks depth on Cameron’s foreign policy views, which are crucial now

Mike Johnson November 14, 2023 - 7:32 am

interesting article, but I think it’s a bit biased against Cameron? his time as PM wasn’t all bad, surely.

Liam O'Reilly November 14, 2023 - 3:37 pm

spelling error in the second paragraph, ‘Controversial’ should be ‘controversial’. also, some commas missing throughout, makes it hard to read.

Sarah K November 15, 2023 - 12:21 am

wow, didn’t know about the lobbying scandal. that’s pretty serious, isn’t it?

Greg Walters November 15, 2023 - 1:54 am

so Cameron’s back, huh? politics is full of surprises… Brexit still a hot topic I see


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