What does the latest politics betting say? Tories under fire and big moves in Germany

  • Max Liu
  • 4:00 min read
UK foreign secretary Dominic Raab
Dominic Raab faced calls to resign

It's been a week of chaos for the UK government, condemnation for the US administration and big moves on Olaf Scholz in the German election betting says Max Liu...

Seven days ago Armin Laschet was 1.351/3 to be next chancellor but now he is out to 1.654/6 and his nearest rival Olaf Scholz in into 3.02/1.

The odds on the Conservatives winning a majority at the next general election drifted in a week when there was intense criticism of Boris Johnson and calls for his foreign secretary Dominic Raab to resign.

The Tories are out to 2.245/4 to win a majority while a hung parliament is 2.35/4. It's 1.635/8 to be in 2024.

Polling this weekend showed Johnson's party losing support and Labour picking up points amid the continuing fall out from the US withdrawal from Afghanistan, and in particular Raab's absence as the crisis was escalating.

Johnson looks set to stick by Raab who was criticised for being on holiday in Crete when it was obvious that the Afghan government was about to fall to the Taliban. The foreign secretary delegated a call about the evacuation of Afghan interpreters to a junior minister.

The Sunday Times reports today that Raab was told by a senior Downing Street official to return home on Friday 13 August as Afghanistan. But he didn't fly until the small hours of Monday morning because Johnson said he could stay on holiday.

In private Tory MPs, and former foreign secretaries, have called for Raab to be sacked. They know, however, that Johnson prefers to stand by his ministers having already refused to sack Priti Patel, Matt Hancock and Robert Jenrick over the last 18 months.

Johnson himself was an abysmal foreign secretary but was allowed to choose when he went, eventually resigning from Theresa May's government over her Brexit deal.

If the cumulative effect of these controversies is distrust in his government, however, Johnson will have to change tack. He is expected to reshuffle his cabinet next month or early next year and could move Raab, who harbours leadership ambitions and is 23.022/1 to succeed Johnson, to a domestic role.

Starmer looks ahead to key conference

Summer started in terrible fashion for Keir Starmer as Labour lost the Hartlepool by-election but their victory against the odds in Batley and Spen in July looks like it may have been a turning point. At least, that's what Starmer is hoping.

He laid into Johnson this week over Afghanistan and was praised for carrying out his role as leader of the opposition in exactly the decisive manner his supporters hoped to see when they voted for him.

Now Starmer, who is 1.768/11 to continue as Labour leader to 2024 or later, is planning a big autumn for his leadership.

Keir Starmer and Kim Leadbeater.jpg

He said this weekend he would use his speech at next month's conference to "set out in primary colours what post-pandemic Britain needs to look like." He also hinted he would break the 10 pledges he signed up to in last year's leadership election which would cause more dismay on the left of the party.

Starmer insisted his number one priority was winning the next general election. The odds indicate that he faces an uphill struggle with a Labour majority 8.415/2 and the Tories 1.4740/85 to win most seats.

Biden's 2024 odds on the drift

I reported in midweek that Joe Biden was facing the toughest period so far of his presidency as he was criticised for America's withdrawal from Afghanistan.

This weekend Tony Blair took aim at Biden and labelled the withdrawal "imbecilic". The bigger story, however, is in the betting where there has been a notable drift on Biden's election 2024 price.

On Wednesday he was 4.47/2 to win re-election but today Biden is out to 5.39/2.

Donald Trump is not far behind at 6.25/1.

Scholz closing gap on Laschet in Germany

With just over a month to go until the German election the race to succeed Angela Merkel looks closer than ever following big moves in the betting this week.

Seven days ago Armin Laschet was 1.351/3 to be next chancellor but now he is out to 1.654/6 and his nearest rival Olaf Scholz in into 3.02/1.

This is an extraordinary state of affairs ahead of the election on 26 September.

Armin Laschet.jpg

Laschet had been anointed by Merkel as her heir apparent, he represents the CDU - the biggest bloc in German politics - and was expected to win comfortably. But after an uninspiring campaign, which has been notable only for Laschet's gaffes, he is in danger of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.

Scholz was 5.04/1 a week ago but positive polling, which puts him way ahead as Germans' choice of preferred chancellor, has seen his price shorten.

A week ago Scholz party, the centre-left SDP, were 9.08/1 to win the most seats but they have been backed into 3.412/5. With five weeks to go before polling day in Germany it is clear who has the momentum.

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