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Election 2015: Sock-puppetry claims may mean Shapps gets shove

| 22.04.2015

The sky is starting to fall in on Conservative MP Grant Shapps at the worst possible moment.

As his party’s chairman, the representative for Welwyn Hatfield ought to be leading the fight to usher David Cameron back into Downing Street, alongside Chancellor and questionable ‘master strategist’ George Osborne, but it’s not panning out like that.

Shapps finally admitted last month that he has worked a second job as a ‘millionaire web-marketer’ during his time as an MP using the pseudonym Michael Green, having strenuously denied such reports over the past three years, going as far as threatening a constituent for saying so on Facebook.

He survived that slow-burning scandal, but the Guardian recently claimed that Shapps has, directly or through an intermediary, used the name ‘Contribsx’ to make positive adjustments to his Wikipedia page and negatively edit those of other politicians, including some of his Conservative colleagues.

Shapps called the ‘sock-puppetry’ charge ‘categorically false and defamatory’ on the BBC, before attempting to convince others in the studio that a wolf was coming to eat their sheep.*

The 47-year-old is 5/1 to be stood down as Tory chairman before May 7th.

At present, the price looks about right, as the Prime Minister will resist making his party look foolish, and himself weak, by binning one of his closest allies during the General Election campaign.

However, that could change if Shapps’ grasp of the truth is shown to be lacking once more.

The Conservatives aren’t having the best time of it, with Labour leader Ed Miliband clear favourite to be Prime Minister by the start of July at 8/11 with Ladbrokes. Cameron is now 11/10 to claim that honour, having been 4/6 earlier on in the campaign.

Some solace will be taken from the fact that the Blues still lead the market for most seats at 2/5, ahead of Labour at 2/1, but with potential coalition bedfellows Ukip, the Lib Dems and the DUP looking unlikely to muster up 40 seats between them, coming top might not save the Tories.

*May or may not be true

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Christian Crowther

Give Christian a sport with anything remotely spherical in it and he’ll happily while away the hours watching it on the box. However, he’d much prefer writing about, playing or betting on golf, football, cricket, tennis, snooker.... you get the picture.