What’s behind the “step down” rumours?
William Hill have cut their odds about Tony Blair resigning as Labour leader during 2005 from 5/2 to 2/1 – and lengthened their odds about him surviving as Prime Minister for longer than Margaret Thatcher from 4/1 to 9/2.
According to the bookmaker: “the political rumour mill seems to be full of stories suggesting that Mr Blair will be going sooner rather than later, so we are adjusting our odds accordingly’.
The Blair to go by the end of 2005 market is one that we have repeatedly said was good value over the past four months and at one stage the price reached 7/2. Only last week we were suggesting that it be twinned with David Blunkett returning during the year as a form of arbitrage.
Today’s move follow the rifts that were widely reported this morning and the suggestion that Gordon Brown was planning his own separate campaign for the General Election.
Could it be, some are asking, that this is the start of a bid by the Chancellor to force the issue of the leadership ahead of the General Election? Certainly Brown is known to have been furious about the effort to side-line him from the election planning.
The Blair going in 2005 has been online for several months but there are no links at the moment. We will let you know as soon as it is possible to click-through. We thought this a good bet at 3/1, 7/2 and 5/2 and we still think there is value at 2/1.