Glasgow East swings

July 4, 2008

I see that William Hill has changed their prices to bring them in line with the other bookmakers:-

SNP — 8/11
Labour — evens
Conservatives — 25/1
Liberal Democrats — 33/1

So now the only bookie that was backing Labour to win, now thinks the SNP will win.

The Liberal Democrats have named their candidate as Ian Robertson. He previously stood in the Westminster election of 2005 in the Rutherglen and Hamilton West seat, increasing their share of the vote by 6.7% – mainly from Labour voters – and squeezing past the SNP to go into second place. Given the state of the Liberal Democrats in Scotland now I think he’ll be lucky to keep their vote share but nonetheless he has a decent pedigree.

The SNP have also named their candidate as the Baillieston councillor John Mason. He has served on Glasgow City Council since 1998 and is the Glasgow SNP’s longest serving councillor. He also happens to be the most popular councillor in Glasgow – having the highest personal vote of any councillor in Glasgow, and the 4th highest vote in Scotland!

When he was first elected in 1998 he achieved a swing of 17.45% from Labour to the SNP. Can he manage to pull off a 22% swing?

Since Baillieston is a large part of the Glasgow East constituency this should be a shrewd move, capitalising on his local support. John lives in the East End and has done for the last 18 years.

The Scottish Socialist Party have named their candidate as Frances Curran; the joint leader of the party alongside Colin Fox. This clearly shows an intent by the SSP to try and take the socialist vote from the Solidarity Party, the other socialist party headed by Tommy Sheridan.

Both Labour and Solidarity are expected to name their candidates later today. I would guess that George Ryan (Labour) and Tommy Sheridan (Solidarity) would be the favourites.

If Tommy Sheridan does run, his high personal profile will probably take votes from both Labour and the SNP, making any result ridiculously hard to call.

And that will make Gordon Brown very nervous indeed.

Glasgow East non-runners

July 3, 2008

Seems like, incredibly, the SNP are now the political commentators favourite to win the Glasgow East By-election!

The PHI 100 panel, a group which predicted the Labour loses in Crewe and Nantwich and the London Mayoral elections, are now tipping the SNP to win the east Glasgow seat.

If you think that they’re just a rogue group, let’s go to some other groups everyone knows hardly ever loses – the bookies!

These are Ladbrokes odds for the Glasgow East seat:-

To win:

SNP — 8/13
Labour — 6/5
Conservatives — 100/1
Liberal Democrats — 100/1

And Paddy Powers odds:-

SNP — 4/7
Labour — 5/4
Conservatives — 40/1
Lib Dem — 80/1

So the SNP are favourites in the 4th safest Labour seat in the UK!!!!!!

Only William Hill still have Labour as favourite:-

Labour — 8/11
SNP — evens
Conservatives — 50/1
Lib Dem — 50/1

Though their spokesman on Newsnight Scotland added “Betting will change over the next couple of weeks”.

I’ll wait for the candidates before placing a bet though. Might then be time for a board price bet with William Hill before they slash the odds to match the other bookies.

The Conservatives have announced their candidate though… Davena Rankin. She previously contested two other Glasgow seats (Glasgow Kelvin, Westminster seat, 2001; Glasgow Cathcart, Holyrood seat, 2007) … and lost around two per cent of the previous Conservative vote each time. It seems the bookies have got the Conservative odds right.

That’s really poor odds for the Liberal Democrats. Is that why Nicol Stephen has just resigned?

Maybe its the thought of losing a deposit in Glasgow East!

Nicol blamed stress for his decision. I hope for his sake that its not caused by any nepotistic expenses investigations like the departing Glasgow East Labour MP, David Marshall.

More probably its just another case of an opposition leader just not up to facing Alex Salmond. Like Labour, the Liberal Democrat choices of leader from the MSPs are a limited talent pool, even more so in fact because they’re so few in number. Probably will be a straight choice between Tavish Scott and his ego.

Will they hold off their leadership election till after the by-election like Labour?

If so, we could be in a remarkable position where 2 of the main parties are fighting a by-election without a Scottish MSP leader!

Wonder what the bookies price is on Annabel Goldie resigning any time soon?

And that’s three opposition leaders resigned in a row for Alex Salmond:- Jack McConnell, Wendy Alexander and Nicol Stephen.

Does he get to keep them?