John Bickley UKIP – 2nd favourite to win Oldham by-election https://t.co/9vjHVDFG2y
— Mike Smithson (@MSmithsonPB) November 10, 2015
With the EU dominating the headlines the time should be ripe for the Purples
Because it is the first by-election of the current parliament and because of its proximity to Heywood & Middleton where UKIP came very close just over a year ago expectations are running very high for UKIP in Oldham.
The candidate is the same and, like Heywood, Oldham West and Royton as a constituency appears quite similar. So inevitably last year’s by-election outcome will be the yardstick on UKIP success/failure will be judged.
Just getting a good second place won’t be enough – the LAB majority, if that is indeed what happens, needs to be kept in the hundreds not thousands.
This is particularly important because domestic politics is now so dominated by the EU referendum. A UKIP win or strong showing will send out a powerful message and Nigel Farage clearly knows that.
We know from past experience how Labour finds it challenging getting its vote out in heartland seats when the government of the country is not at stake.
Given how poorly constituency polls performed at the general election I’m not sure that we are going to see any by-election specific surveys. If you are having a punt then you are likely to be flying blind.
Second place and party performance betting markets are likely to come on stream shortly. Ladbrokes have the same price 5/6 on whether the LDs will or will not lose their deposit by failing to secure 5%. I’m on them doing it.