Archive for the 'Betting' Category


The 100/1 bet on the next Labour leader that quite a few of us have taken this last week

Sunday, August 14th, 2016

Jez Burgon

Burgon Bet

At 50/1 Shadow Justice Secretary, Richard Burgon, remains value to be the next Labour leader

Earlier on this week I decided to back Richard Burgon to be the next Labour leader at 100/1. My logic was that the Labour party is continually moving strongly towards the Corbynite left, as evidenced by the NEC election results and that the polls indicate that despite the disastrous personal polling that Corbyn has, and the mass no confidence that Labour MPs have in Corbyn, current Labour members are on course to re-elect Corbyn.

I’m also coming to the conclusion that not even a general election defeat will make the Corbynistas doubt their man, strategy, or the project. But at some stage Corbyn will eventually stand down as leader, and my betting strategy is now to lay anyone who isn’t a Corbynite and start backing those on team Corbyn.

So why back Leeds East MP Richard Burgon? He’s been very prominent in publicly and passionately defending Corbyn and his supporters, a few weeks ago, Burgon said ‘Corbyn supporters must not be portrayed as thugs.’ and also saying ‘I have been bullied by anti-Corbyn MPs’, this is the sort of stuff that will earn him plaudits from Corbyn’s supporters.

With the ideological purity of someone who regularly attended ‘communist events across the North’ coupled with his loyalty to Corbyn and the Corbyn project, that should appeal to those that currently make up a majority of Labour members, so Richard Burgon represents value, even at 50/1. Loyalty might just be Burgon’s secret weapon to becoming Labour leader.

He may also do very well in his job as Shadow Justice Secretary/Shadow Lord Chancelor, the current Justice Secretary & Lord Chancellor, Liz Truss, is someone without a legal background, which should theoretically give an advantage to the Cambridge educated lawyer Richard Burgon. A well performing Shadow Cabinet minister may well be a rare, if not unique, occurrence in this parliament, especially when other compared to Burgon’s Mao’s little red book throwing colleagues.

But before you follow my advice, full disclosure, when Burgon’s price started to tumble earlier on this week, Ladbrokes’ politics team tweeted this, click on the tweet and look at the replies underneath, they aren’t very complimentary towards Mr Burgon.



According to the betting markets, at least, Article 50 is going to be invoked later rather than earlier

Saturday, August 13th, 2016

Brexit Odds   Article 50 trigger date

One of the betting markets I got into in the week after the referendum was when would Article 50 be invoked. My view was and remains is that this is going to take longer than many anticipated. I got 5/2 that it would be after the end of 2017 and I’ve got a bit on Betfair which has a cut off date for its final time segment of June 30th 2017.

There are so many hurdles ahead not least a court case planned for October seeking a ruling that specific legislation would be required rather than it being carried out on Royal Prerogative. If it does require a new law you can see the legislation getting bogged down in both houses of parliament.

The PM has ruled out anything before 2017 anyway and its likely that ministers could face a battle with whatever form appears to be coming out of the informal talks.

The point about article 50 is that formal negotiations are not possible until it has been invoked which puts the country seeking to get out in a poor bargaining position.

At the moment I’m confident about my Betfair bets.

Mike Smithson


Smith’s leadership chances fall to a 6% chance on Betfair following High Court ruling on who’ll be able to vote

Monday, August 8th, 2016

It is very hard to come to a view about what will be the electoral impact of today’s judgement. There is so much overlap between the new members who can now vote and those who signed up under the £25 registered supporters scheme.

Received opinion has it that this will help Corbyn and certainly that is how it has been taken on the Betfair market. Maybe that is correct – maybe it isn’t.

It is important to remind ourselves that there hasn’t been a members’s poll published since the nominations were finalised.

Earlier the anti-Corbyn campaign, Saving Labour claimed that half of those who had registered were opposed to the incumbent. My understanding is that this was based on the number of click-throughs going from their site to the LAB register page when it was open.

There are reports of another YouGov members’ poll being in the field though that might be outdated by the change in the selectorate created by this morning’s High Court judgement.

I certainly rate Smith’s chances at greater than 6%.

Mike Smithson


The Vladimir Putin link looks set to dog the Trump campaign right through to November

Sunday, August 7th, 2016

His lack of response make it easy for it to be portrayed in the most negative fashion

Above is a new ad from the Clinton campaign seeking to raise doubts over Trump’s linkages with the Russian President Vladimir Putin. It seems to have been aimed at the Republican party establishment and I think it is very effective.

The Putin element has increasingly become a huge campaign issue and one in which the Republican nominee has failed to address. This is all being exacerbated by Trump’s total refusal to release his tax returns – something that every main party nominee has done for nearly half a century.

This leaves him open to attack in so many ways and allows his opponents to frame issues like Putin in terms that suit them.

What’s been remarkable about the campaign since the conventions ended has been the lack of support he’s getting from the big figures in his party. No one wants to be associated with his campaign and their are big fears about the Republicans standing in other elections on November 8th being hit because of the man at the top of the ticket.

There’s been much talk of him pulling out of the race and even that the Republican party would try to find a way of getting him off the ticket. The legal and organisational obstacles to this seem enormous and the time is fast running out.

I can’t see Trump backing out of his on accord. The man has simply got too much pride. What is becoming so clear that it is a totally different kettle of fish going for the nomination compared with being the actual nominee.

As I write Trump is a 23% chance on Betfair.

Mike Smithson


Latest WH2016 and LAB leadership betting

Saturday, August 6th, 2016

Next President

2016 LAB Leadership Contest


Diane James now 75% favourite to be next UKIP leader

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

Does anybody know what this is about?


The LAB-UKIP race is on: Which party will split first?

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016



Billionaire Republican fundraiser, Meg Whitman, says she’ll raise money for Hillary Clinton in order to stop Trump

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016


Another sign of the party splits that the Trump nomination has created

The big WH2016 news overnight is a story in the New York Times that prominent GOP fundraiser and Hewlett Packard executive, Meg Whitman, has announced that she’s supporting Hillary Clinton and will help raise money for her campaign. According to the New York Times she says she’s taking the action in order to stop Trump who she describes as a threat to American democracy. She told the paper:-

“I will vote for Hillary, I will talk to my Republican friends about helping her, and I will donate to her campaign and try to raise money for her,” Ms. Whitman said in a telephone interview.

She revealed that Mrs. Clinton, the Democratic nominee, had reached out to her in a phone call about a month ago, one of the first indications that Mrs. Clinton is aggressively courting Republican leaders. While acknowledging she diverged from Mrs. Clinton on many policy issues, Ms. Whitman said it was time for Republicans “to put country first before party.”

Using remarkably blunt language, she argued that the election of Mr. Trump, whom she called “a dishonest demagogue,” could lead the country “on a very dangerous journey.” She noted that democracies had seldom lasted longer than a few hundred years and warned that those who say that “it can’t happen here” are being naïve. .

In recent years Whitman has played a prominent role in the GOP and in 2010 spent $140m of her own money in a bid for the Governorship of California.

As well as the practical help this move has enormous symbolism and reflects many of the concerns of the party establishment about the Trump nomination.

A real danger for the Trump campaign is that the Whitman move could trigger similar moves from high profile Republicans. Whitman is very well known and well regarded in the US.

A week ago Trump was a 33% chance on Betfair. He’s now down to 25%.

Mike Smithson