Ladbrokes have put up what I think are the first constituency markets for the next general election, I’ve always looked fondly at these markets, especially after the 2015 general election where there was a lot of profit in backing the Tories in the English marginals, and the SNP everywhere in Scotland.
Chingford & Woodford Green and Richmond Park
I think it is worth looking at both Greater London seats together. Demographics and Brexit are working against the Tories in London and then you have factor in London seems like the heart of Corbynista land, heaving with activists.
In last year’s general election the Tory majority in Chingford & Woodford Green was slashed from just over 8,000 to just over 2,000, which was quite some achievement considering UKIP didn’t stand and they polled nearly 6,000 in 2015. To put that 2,000 majority into context in Tory annus horribilis of 1997 the Tory majority in this seat was nearly 6,000.
With Iain Duncan Smith being a unreconstructed Hard Brexiteer and the architect of Universal Credit those should both be a hindrance for IDS especially if the country experiences the negative impacts of a No Deal/Hard Brexit.
I’d want more than the 5/6 on Labour winning on this seat but I think the safest option is to not back the Tories winning Chingford & Woodford Green.
Bollywood’s greatest fan has already lost Richmond Park once, albeit in a by-election, so we know there’s a groundswell for ousting Zac Goldsmith. The Lib Dems have a majority of 45 to overturn and nearly 6,000 Labour voters to squeeze that 4/6 on the Lib Dems looks huge to me and well worth backing the Lib Dems here. Being a Hard Brexiteer in Richmond should be a real hindrance for Goldsmith in the event of No Deal.
Hastings & Rye
Amber Rudd’s majority in this seat is a mere 346 votes, as someone who was seen as the overseer of the Windrush fiasco and now in delivering the ticking time bomb that is Universal Credit, something that is worrying a lot of Tory MPs., you can see how Labour can make Amber Rudd as the embodiment of the Nasty Party. Coupled with the usual swing against a government entering its second decade and I think the 6/4 on Labour is huge.
This is where I think backing the Tories is value. Chris Williamson, Derby North’s MP, is someone who if I were running the Tory campaign in Derby North would focus on that Williamson is someone who is too extreme for Corbyn. Williamson had to quit the shadow frontbench for wanting to double council tax, which is very electorally unappealing. Williamson is defending a majority of 2,015 but he did lose the seat in 2015, so he can be ousted.
You can access these constituency markets by clicking here. The bets shall be void in the event of boundary changes but I’m not expecting the boundary changes to go through, another consequence of Mrs May squandering David Cameron’s majority.