I haven’t written very much recently about British politics, but I have probably never followed an election as closely as I have this one. I will be writing a separate prediction with some solid numbers later but this is a little different.
I am picking ten recommendations where I believe the betting favourite can lose. I am basing it purely on constituency odds from Paddy Power based at 11am on Wednesday morning as between them, they cover all 650 constituencies.
Furthermore, I am looking at it in a slightly different way. I do not expect all ten to win but I am hoping that I can correctly predict five non favourites and that overall I would at least break even.
Therefore, I have a few outsiders that can win if Labour gain at the expense of the Conservatives and a few vice versa though this is not perfectly balanced. I then have some less correlated seats across Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
The approach would be to have an equal amount on each seat and then hope to make a small gain. There are much better political tipsters and resources out there, this is more a personal exercise I am sharing.
I am ranking them in order of largest outsider to shortest, would love to her your thoughts;
Current MP: Chris Hazzard
Sinn Fein Majority: 2,446
Prediction: Michael Savage, SDLP (4/1)
This is quite a big outsider at 4/1 and I haven’t heard anyone recommend it but I think it could come into play if there is a province wide swing to the SDLP away from Sinn Fein.
Most of the attention has focused on the battle between both parties in Foyle but I think this could be one to watch on a particularly good night for the SDLP/bad night for Sinn Fein.
Current MP: Emma Dent-Coad
Labour Majority: 20
Prediction: Emma Dent-Coad, Labour (13/5)
A very high-profile seat in the last two years given the awful tragedy of Grenfell Tower. More recently, the former Conservative MP, Sam Gyimah, has decided to run here for the Liberal Democrats. It’s going to be very tight finish but 13/5 is quite generous for Labour.
Current MP: Jared O’ Mara
Labour Majority: 2,125
Prediction: Olivia Blake, Labour (9/4)
This seat caused one of the biggest shocks in 2017 when the Nick Clegg was beaten by Jared O’Mara. Unfortunately for O’Mara, he has had a torrid time since as he has struggled with depression and alcoholism. It is simply assumed that this seat will go back to the Liberal Democrats but I think it could be worth watching.
Current MP: Martin Whitfield
Labour Majority: 3,083
Prediction: Martin Whitfield, Labour (9/4)
Another 9/4 for a Labour incumbent that the markets see as struggling to hold their seat. What has made me think this may be good value is that the YouGov MRP has Labour ahead and the SNP seem to be struggling in the last days of the campaign.
Current MP: Paul Girvan
DUP Majority: 3,208
Prediction: Danny Kinahan, UUP (17/10)
Danny Kinahan held the seat from 2010 to 2015. I sense quite a lot of disillusionment with the DUP and I was not at all impressed by their performance in NI debates. South Antrim is probably the only seat that unionists can show their anger with the DUP, safe in the knowledge that South Antrim will still return a Unionist MP.
Current MP: Judith Cummins
Labour Majority: 6,700
Prediction: Narinder Sikhon, Conservative (6/4)
This is one of about twenty seats that can go to the Conservatives from Labour if the Conservatives manage to have a strong showing. It’s current projected have Labour only 1% by YouGov. While I think it is more likely, Labour slightly outperform their current polling, I want to have a few on both sides of any potential movement.
Current MP: Derek Thomas
Conservative Majority: 312
Prediction: Andrew George, Liberal Democrats (5/4)
This is a seat where would be Labour voters can vote tactically to remove the incumbent Conservative MP. It may be on the constituencies that decide Boris Johnson is not fit to be Prime Minister and votes for the Liberal Democrats
Dagenham & Rainham
Current MP: Jon Cruddas
Labour Majority: 4,652
Prediction: Jon Cruddas, Labour (11/10)
I think Jon Cruddas has a better chance of defending a 4.6k lead than 11/10 suggests, particularly in an outer-London seat that voted 69% to Remain and where the Brexit Party are also competing.
Current MP: David Hanson
Labour Majority: 4,240
Prediction: Rob Roberts, Conservative (11/10)
A Labour seat that voted 54% to Remain. YouGov have it as a tossup while Electoral Calculus have it as a Labour Hold. It is a seat that could move if the Conservatives slightly exceed their final polling.
Current MP: Theresa Villiers
Conservative Majority: 353
Prediction: Emma Whysall, Labour (Evens)
One of the few potential gains Labour could make in this election. Chingford and Woodford Green (Labour 6/4) is a more appealing upset story given the stature of Iain Duncan Smith but I still prefer this seat at Evens given the Greens got four times the Conservative majority in 2017.