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Astonishingly Roy Moore remains the odds on favourite to win the Alabama Senate race

November 23rd, 2017

TSE

 




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Trying to understand why the Lib Dems aren’t doing better in the polls

November 23rd, 2017

 

The Lib Dems are still paying the price for being hollowed out in local government during the coalition years.

One of the mysteries of current politics for me is how badly the Lib Dems are doing in the  polls. Since the general election every opinion poll bar one has the Lib Dems polling in the single digits when the current political terrain should be fertile for them.

With Brexit being so polarising I’d have thought the only staunchly GB wide anti-Brexit party coupled with the Tories and Labour being led by two flawed leaders would see the Lib Dems polling a lot better than they currently are, so why aren’t they, the chart above might explain it.

Like their MPs, since the Lib Dems entered the coalition their councillors were shellacked every May, that hollowing of the party sees the influence of the party weakened and perceived to be an irrelevance. My own feeling and experience is that a strong councillor base helps you win and hold Parliamentary seats, and that’s why the Lib Dems have lost so many MPs in recent years.

Earlier on this year the Lib Dems hit their highest ever membership numbers, so it isn’t all doom and gloom for them. Assuming the next general election is in 2022, that gives the Lib Dems four rounds of local elections to rebuild their local government presence.

If they can rebuild their footprint there, and undo the near two thousands council seats the Lib Dems have lost since they entered the coalition it might help them see an increase in the polls and the number of MPs they have.

TSE



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This evening’s cartoon

November 22nd, 2017



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A couple of new betting specials from Ladbrokes

November 22nd, 2017


Looking to recoup their losses from their disastrous buzzword bingo market Ladbrokes have put up a couple of new markets.

The 6/4 on Philip Hammond looks good as budget seems to be received across the Tory party, but that includes praise from John Redwood, which makes me doubt that long term this budget will be well received, the golden rule for budgets is that budgets applauded on the day, usually unravel shortly thereafter.

Coupled with the general uncertainty about Mrs May, the odds are a bit too skinny for me, I suspect a new PM will want to have their own Chancellor in place.

The second bet I’m going to back, what struck me in recent days is the lack of full blown opprobrium aimed at Kezia Dugdale by the SNP over her appearance in ‘I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here’ and not focusing on her constituents.

It is well known that her partner is an SNP MSP, Jenny Gilruth, and well love does conquer all, I wonder if a defection is on the cards, I’d stake more if the bet allowed a defection in 2018. I’m probably reading too much into these tweets from a Scottish journalist and a Tory MSP from a few days ago.

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Stop, Hammond Time

November 22nd, 2017

Usually budgets have problems after they’ve been delivered, this one seems to falling apart before it has been delivered. You get the feeling that this will be Philip Hammond’s last budget, only 16 months after becoming Chancellor, those YouGov figures are quite damning for Philip Hammond, no wonder Ladbrokes have a next Chancellor market up.

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Today’s budget buzzword bingo

November 22nd, 2017

Ladbrokes have put up their customary Budget buzzword bingo, I’m avoiding this market as nothing leaps out as value and I really don’t fancy contributing to the Ladbrokes Christmas bonus fund. Ladbrokes also have a market up on the colour of Philip Hammond’s tie, this is another market I’m going to avoid for the same reasons.

There is one bet that does intrigue me and I think is worth a few pounds, 16/1 on Ken Clarke to fall asleep during the  budget.

The greatest Prime Minister we never had has form for this, he was accused of falling asleep during the 2011 budget, he denied it, but Ladbrokes paid out on it, because they had a similar market up then as well and they took Ed Miliband’s accusation as proof.

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This is one betting market I’m absolutely confident the punters have undoubtedly got right

November 21st, 2017

But in good news for Mrs May the latest Kantar polls gives the Tories a 4% lead, at the general election they were giving the Tories a 5% lead, versus the 2.5% lead they actually achieved

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Deal or no deal

November 21st, 2017

Why I can’t see a deal being agreed before the 1st of April 2019

Ladbrokes have a market up on a few Brexit related markets, out of these three I’m quite keen to take the 6/4 on there being no Brexit deal being agreed before the 1st of April 2019.

My logic behind this is that for a long time I’ve had the feeling that 2 years to do a deal is practically impossible even for a competent government with a decent majority. You cannot undo 46 years worth of laws, regulations, standards et al in 2 years, after all when the UK joined the EC we had a seven years of transition.

With stories emerging in recent days that ‘EU member states have sought legal advice from the European Commission over a possible extension of the two-year negotiation period set out in Article 50’ it is possible to see how the March 2019 exit date is pushed back to ensure we get a Brexit that works for the UK and the EU27.

Of course this is also a good tip if you think the Brexit talks fail, and given the current logjam over stage one over exit payment and the Irish border question it isn’t hard to see the talks failing and into recriminations about the looming disaster for all sides, and a no deal, no transition, disorderly Brexit will negatively impact all current members of the EU, not just us, though we will bear the brunt of it.

I don’t think that 6/4 will last long.

For the purposes of this bet Ladbrokes clearly state, A Brexit Deal = A withdrawal agreement under Article 50(2), approved by The Council of the European Union & UK Government.

TSE