A case methinks of hearts over heads
As a general rule political betting prices and polling tend to run in parallel particularly in the constituencies.
So when earlier this month Lord Ashcroft published his latest round there was a rush of activity when apparently obvious bargain appeared. One such one was Nigel Farage’s Thanet South where following the numbers being available the UKIP price of 2/5 eased to 5/6. An earlier Ashcroft poll had had Farage with a 3% lead. The latest put the Tories 5% ahead.
Yet in the past fortnight we’ve the the UKIP price getting a bit tighter and is now 8/13 making the seat just about the only one in the country where betting and the polling are showing a very different picture.
My expectation is that the Tories will mount a tough campaign against Farage with a message that what the area, with all its economic problems, least needs is a part-time MP.
No doubt the blues could make constant references to Farage’s voting and attendance record in Brussels. Maybe even there’ll be references to his Euro-expenses.
But Farage is party leader and will surely get a boost from that. He’ll be the one on the TV every night and also, if they are held, appearing in at least one of the debates.
In spite of the polling I’d still rate his chances quite highly.
I’m on the Tories here at 11/4 in a bet I got on just after the Ashcroft poll came out.