With Labour party members frantically casting their votes on electing Ed Miliband’s replacement before Thursday’s midday deadline, the journey from last-ditch nominee to top political office is almost complete for Jeremy Corbyn.
That is unless pollsters and bookmakers in unison have got it catastrophically wrong ahead of the Saturday 12th September results, with Ladbrokes placing Corbyn as the unshakeable 1/7 favourite to claim Labour’s top job.
Even a few controversies to have surfaced in recent days surrounding Corbyn’s chairmanship of the Stop the War Coalition feel unlikely to dissuade swathes of party members baying for a reversion to more socialist policies.
Some forecasts have even suggested a previously unthinkable figure of 70 per cent of party members will make Corbyn their first preference on the ballot paper, and even if these are on the fanciful side, the 1/2 about him attaining over 50 per cent is arguably the best value bet left on the contest.
The MP for Islington North has managed to harness the political mood for change within a heavily-defeated Labour party in this leadership election contest and now the chances of Tony Blair suddenly throwing his support behind him are as remote as those of Corbyn being defeated.
When cat calls from distinguished New Labour supporters such as Blair grew loudest at the beginning of the month, there was mini surge for Yvette Cooper, but that support has since dissipated.
The wife of former Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls is still the closest rival in the betting, but even Cooper has drifted from 6s to 7/1 in the final days.
Whether a huge swell in party membership for Labour is read as the result of genuine ‘Corbyn Mania’ by an energised electorate, or disingenuous saboteurs wishing to get the divisively-strong left winger into power, the result is still one-way ballot traffic.
With little value to be found in the contest however, Ladbrokes customers may wish to explore the Leader/Deputy Leader doubles market.
Stellar Creasy, the incumbent MP for Walthamstow, is the 8/1 second favourite to be voted in as the reds’ next Deputy and with two female candidates set to miss out on the top job, it could work to the 38-year-old’s advantage – although Tom Watson is currently the 1/16 market leader.
A Corbyn/Creasy axis at the apex of Labour is a 12/1 chance with Ladbrokes.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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