On this day a year ago Cameron was a 12.5/1 outsider

On this day a year ago Cameron was a 12.5/1 outsider

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    How the political world has changed in the past twelve months

With Gordon Brown due to make what’s being described as the speech of his career at Labour’s conference at Manchester GMEX centre today it’s perhaps worth underlining how the political world has been turned upside-down in the past 12 months. This is how things looked exactly a year ago today on September 25th 2005.

On this day a year ago the prices on the Tory leadership on the Betfair betting exchange were Davis 0.47/1: Clark 4/1: Cameron 12.5/1: Fox 14.5/1: Rifkind 47/1. So Cameron was in the third favourite slot at an amazing 12.5/1 while David David’s price at 0.47/1 was only a touch easier than this morning’s 0.42/1 that’s the best that’s available on Gordon Brown.

On this day a year ago the most recent ICM poll had Labour 9% ahead, YouGov was completing a survey that put the party 8% ahead while MORI was finalising a survey showing a Labour 10% lead. Today YouGov in the Daily Telegraph has the Tories at 38%, Labour at 31% with the Lib Dems on 18%.

On this day a year ago Labour was the overwhelmnig favourite to win the next General Election with punters risking their money at 0.52/1 on the party winning most seats. Today’s price is 1.26/1.

On this day a year ago the most recent polls on the Tory leadership had just 4% of ordinary voters saying they wanted David Cameron. YouGov was showing Ken Clarke ahead with 28% while ICM had him at 40%. The most recent poll of Tory members had Cameron at 17% well behind David Davis and Ken Clarke.

On this day a year ago there wasn’t, like now, a spread market on how long the Lib Dem leader would survive. Charles Kennedy, who unlike Ming was enjoying positive poll ratings, had just returned from his party conference where although there had been some criticism of his style there was no real hint of what was to come fourteen weeks later.

How will the political world look on September 25th 2007?

Mike Smithson

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