Could losing the confidence of the House be what actually does it?
One of the great adages on Politicalbetting is that “Nobody ever got rich betting against Teflon Tony”. Certainly he has proved the betting markets wrong time and time and again those who have had faith in his survival gene have made money. Just look at the record:-
Getting on for four years ago, in the frenzy over the Hutton Inquiry following David Kelly’s death, Blair became odds on for a while to go before the end of September 2003. Those who stuck with Tony made money.
Then on one famous weekend in May 2004 Gordon Brown became the odds on favourite to lead his party at the General Election amidst reports of the pressure that the Blair family was under. Those who stuck with Tony made money.
In the months leading up to Labour’s 2004 conference poll after poll was showing that with Brown as leader Labour’s margin would be at least five points bigger. The pressure on Blair was enormous and he needed to go into hospital for heart treatment. What happened? On the final day of he made his famous “going at the end of a third term” pledge and he shot up in the polls. Those who stuck with Tony made money.
And immediately after the General Election the bookie price on him going in 2005 tightened to evens. Then everybody was pointing to the EU constitutional referendum which he had committed Labour to and the talk was of him going after that. Fortunately for Lucky Tony the French said “Non” and Blair got out of that one. Those who stuck with Tony made money.
So don’t underestimate this guy. His ability to surprise and deal with the moment is extraordinary and clearly he wants to make it very hard for Gordon to succeed him.
You can see some outside event developing that only he can handle for the party, for the nation or for the planet in his own messianic style. You can hear the tremble in his voice now as he looks at the camera calling for everybody to back him in this one final endeavour.
So he might have had a bad PMQs yesterday, the honours inquiry might be getting closer and closer and parts of his party are in open rebellion. So what? This guy is a superstar.
My current position in the Blair leaving date betting to to lay (bet against) April-June being the quarter that sees him go.