Take the 6/1 that Charles will survive until May 1st
With the Lib Dem leader facing the threat of resignations from his Shadow Cabinet if he continues to hold onto his office one bookie is now taking bets on who will be leading the party on May 1st – the week of the local elections.
Favourite is Menzies Campbell at 5/4 with the price of 7/2 for Simon Hughes and Mark Oaten. Charles Kennedy comes fourth in the betting at 6/1.
Given Kennedy’s resilience and stubbornness we think that 6/1 is a good price and certainly worth the punt. For if there was a deal whereby he would go after the local elections then you would still end up as a winner.
A deal giving Kennedy the time to stay in office until May seems a possible compromise and would avoid a leadership ballot in the critical weeks ahead of the May 4th elections.
For the best cards are still in the leader’s hand. He’s staying put and he is making it very hard for those who want to push him aside. In addition there’s the huge uncertainty over of how the party’s members would vote in a national ballot.
All of this makes the May 1st survival bet at 6/1 seem a great price.
On the main next leader markets the money is going on Menzies Campbell again with the price tightening during the day.