Which is the best bet here?

Which is the best bet here?

Could one of the three main leaders be out in 2009?

In the panel are the prices in the Ladbrokes leader markets for 2009. The question is whether there is any value in any of them?

Is Brown going to survive and if so is the 4/11 you can get a good bet? I’m not wholly sure because if the polls went sharply against him then would the party be so forgiving again? Could there be a forceful challenge or could Gord decide to call it a day if a general election defeat looked inevitable?

With David Cameron we have now seen two periods of polling reverses – the three months after Brown became PM in the summer of 2007 and the last three months. In each case there were murmurings – mostly from those in the party who have never reconciled themselves to the the new leader – but Cameron survived. The closer it gets to the general election the better Cameron’s prospects look.

Would the party consider a change before the general election if the polls continue to move against the Tories? My guess is no but the 1/8 is hardly attractive.

Surprisingly Nick Clegg is probably the safest of the three provided ICM, the pollster the party most trusts, continues to show reasonable Lib Dem shares. Having been through two traumatic leadership contests this parliament the party is hardly likely to go for a third – and in any case Clegg’s position on civil liberties is resonating well at all levels.

Again I find the 1/8 odds unattractive though it looks a pretty good bet.

Mike Smithson

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