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Oldham East & Saddleworth By-Election: Labour a shoo-in?

UK Politics RSS / Maxliu / 05 January 2011 /

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The Oldham East & Saddleworth by-election is seen as a referendum on Nick Clegg's leadership - and it doesn't look good

The Oldham East & Saddleworth by-election is seen as a referendum on Nick Clegg's leadership - and it doesn't look good

"The current betting: Labour [1.24; Lib Dems [6.0]; Conservatives [20.0]; Any Other Party [330.0]."

Betting suggests public's faith in Lib Dems has vanished with Labour short odds-on to win the first by-election of this parliament

Labour Party candidate Debbie Abrahams is the huge favourite at just [1.24] on Betfair to win next week's Oldham East & Saddleworth By-Election, the first to be held since the formation of the coalition government last year.

The January 13 contest was triggered after sitting Labour MP Phil Woolas was found guilty of knowingly making false statements about the character of his Liberal Democrat opponent Elwyn Watkins during the 2010 General Election campaign.

Watkins is standing again for the Lib Dems and is available on the exchange at [6.0] to become a Member of Parliament. Conservative candidate Kashif Ali is a [20.0] chance, in an area not traditionally a Tory stronghold.

At last year's General Election Labour narrowly retained the Lancashire seat, picking-up 31.9% of the vote, with the Lib Dems claiming 31.6% and the Conservatives 26.4%.

Betfair's Andy Lulham said: "With such a close contest back in May you might expect Labour and the Lib Dems to be neck-and-neck in the betting. However the fact that Betfair customers make Labour such strong favourites suggests that the public have lost faith in the Liberal Democrats.

"High-profile gaffes from the likes of Vince Cable, combined with Nick Clegg's handling of the student fees debate, appears to have turned the punters against them."

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