Next UK Election Odds: Betting Market Backs Labour To Beat Conservatives
Betting sites have responded to the Conservatives’ disastrous local election results by ballooning the government’s odds of winning the next UK election, to the benefit of Labour.
The Tories are projected to lose around 1,000 seats from councils across England following another haemorrhaging of votes at the ballot box this May.
Voters have fled the party after 18 months of scandal triggered by Boris Johnson’s partygate probe.
Since then, Johnson has had to quit his job as prime minister in disgrace, Liz Truss lasted less than two months before crashing the economy, and Rishi Sunak has failed to reinstall faith in voters.
The local elections usually act as a protest vote against the ruling party in Westminster but these are harrowing numbers for the government.
Losing so many seats, despite Sunak agreeing an improved Brexit deal in recent weeks, suggest voters are moving past the deciding factor of the 2019 election and have other things on their mind.
And the politics betting sites have taken note. Even as the counts were coming in on Friday morning, the likes of Coral and BoyleSports were already acting to stem the flow of Labour bets for the 2024 UK election.
UK Election Odds
Coral saw their odds on Labour securing the most seats at the next election come in from 1/4 to 1/5 overnight.
BoyleSports’ odds have dropped even further, to 1/6. It suggests Labour have an 85.7% chance of landing the most seats in Parliament next year.
That’s a big advantage. What’s more, Labour are now 8/11 to win a majority, while their odds on securing a minority win have come in to 3/1.
The shift in odds reflects a bad night for the Tories, as their price spirals. Sunak is now looking at a 22% chance of winning the most seats at the next election, with BetUK pushing their price on the Tories out to 7/2.
Can Sunak Win The Election?
The local election results make for bad reading at No 10. How Sunak recovers from this remains to be seen, but the swathe of Labour and Lib Dem votes at the expense of the Conservatives is quite alarming.
One Tory councillor from Sunderland told the BBC voters are still hung up on Johnson and Truss, saying: “Rishi Sunak gets a positive response on the doorstep but there are a lot of people who remember what came before so I think his competence needs to shine through in order to fix that.”
And this is a big issue for Sunak, who is 4/5 to be ousted in 2024. He is leading a party that, since Johnson’s election victory in 2019, has swung from one crisis to the next.
The current cost of living squeeze, worsened by trade tensions with the EU, spiralling inflation, and high fuel costs, is affecting voters.
There is evidently a demand for change, and former Labour voters who backed Johnson over Brexit are shifting to the left again.
Sunak does have some hope, though. The poll gap between Labour and the Tories, which was 30 points last summer at the height of Johnson’s scandal-ridden reign, is down to 14. That’s not enough to stop a Labour majority, but it’s progress.
The PM needs the support of his party to get through the coming months. What lies ahead is a difficult summer of economic tensions as inflation fails to fall, and an impending winter fuel crisis.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine gives Sunak an opportunity to play the international statesman – as Johnson did before him – but won’t be enough to secure votes.
Will Starmer Be Prime Minister?
Focus is instead turning towards Sir Keir Starmer and the very real likelihood that he’ll become prime minister next year.
The bookies have cut their odds on Starmer being PM from 1/3 to 1/2 overnight, and are unlikely to shift that price much over the summer.
Starmer has been courting votes, careful to offer left-wingers the policies they need to stay on side, while also chasing middle-Englanders who naturally vote Tory.
That tactic appears to be working. The leader of the opposition has a better – albeit not great – approval rating compared to Sunak. And Labour are likely to attract Scottish votes at the next election following the SNP’s self-destruction over the past few months.
The big issue for Starmer is whether he can maintain the momentum. Labour’s policies will come under greater scrutiny the closer we get to the election, and Starmer’s team needs to offer hope alongside stability.
The Tories are in their worst shape since the mid-1990s but that does not guarantee Labour a victory here.
Can Boris Win The Election?
Johnson’s approval rating was close to -50 when he left office in disgrace but that won’t worry his backers if he does get the job again.
He delivered an 80-seat majority at the 2019 election and supposedly “got Brexit done”, yet was mired in sleaze.
Labour have done well to paint the Tories as scandal-ridden from top to bottom but voters may not care come the election.
It leaves Starmer with a choice: play it steady and hope to get the breaks at the election, or ramp up the rhetoric to drive further division across the country.
He’s currently playing it safe, as seen in the debate over public sector strikes. The Conservatives are trying to blame Labour for the strikes, while the opposition argue the government is not giving working people a fair wage.
And finger pointing without concrete action like this is unlikely to affect the polls, or the odds, much.
When is the next UK election?
The next UK election will take place on Thursday 2 May 2024, under the Fixed-term Parliaments Act, which states elections must be held a minimum every five years. However, it can be held sooner than this if two-thirds of MPs agree to a snap election.
How often is there a UK election?
The UK election cycle runs for a maximum of five years, under the terms of the Fixed-term Parliaments Act. However, snap elections can also be called at any time, so long as there is a two-thirds majority approval among MPs.
Is there an election if the Prime Minister resigns?
There is no obligation for Parliament to call a new UK election if the Prime Minister resigns their office. This is because the country votes for a party to govern, rather than an individual. However, there could be a no confidence vote in the government, which may trigger a snap election.
Who will win the 2024 UK election?
The UK’s two main parties — Labour and the Conservatives — are likely to dominate the 2024 UK election. The Conservatives have been in power since 2010 and currently boast an 80-seat majority in the House of Commons. Other parties who are likely to run in 2024 include the Liberal Democrats, Green Party and Scottish National Party.
What are the latest UK politics odds?
UK politics betting odds are in a constant state of flux due to the ever-changing nature of global affairs. Political betting sites offer regular markets for betting on the next Prime Minister, which party will win the next election, and who will be leader of the opposition.
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