Politics - Bookmaker Free Bets and Sign-Up Offers
The nature of politics these days means that it can almost be as exciting as sport. The competitive, tribal nature sees people engrossed in all the latest happenings of the political world and betting on politics has certainly become very popular indeed. With odds readily available on not only UK-based elections but also across Europe and of course the United States, there's a huge amounts of market that you can use your politics free bets on. FREEbets.org.uk gives you the lowdown on all you need to know when it comes to betting on politics.
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Latest Political Betting News
It appears as though Westminster is awash with scandal at the moment and #Ladbrokes# have reacted accordingly by offering a market on the next cabinet minister to leave their post. In what has been a tough couple of weeks in UK parliament with wide-scale reports over the inappropriate conduct of MP's, Theresa May has seen her defence secretary Michael Fallon step down from his post as a result of allegations. A whole number of other members of parliament has been accused in reports and there has also been controversies surrounding Boris Johnson and Priti Patel related to other issues.
Boris Johnson has been widely criticised for his comments related that campaigners believe could see British-Iranian woman Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe jailed for five years. Johnson suggested that she was in Iran training journalists when she was in fact in the country on holiday. The Iranian regime is believed to see Johnson's comments as proof Zaghari-Ratcliffe was 'spreading propaganda against the regime'.
However it is International Development Secretary Priti Patel who is the shortest priced to depart her role next. Patel has found herself in hot water after holding meetings with Israeli officials without following the correct ministerial protocol. Whilst on holiday in Israel, it has been revealed she held meetings with a host of Israeli officials but having not come clean with Theresa May she is now in real danger of losing her job.
Ladbrokes makes Patel the favourite in the market, being priced as odds-on with reports suggesting that she will be sacked imminently. Second in the market is Damian Green, the first secretary of state. Green is under investigation for his alleged conduct towards a journalist, though he strongly denies the claims. Boris Johnson meanwhile finds himself priced third shortest.
Political Betting Markets
Away from sporting events, political betting probably provides the greatest betting potential all year round. Where as entertainment markets only run for say the duration of a television series or a one off event such as the Eurovision Song Contest, there is virtually always a political market you can bet on. Election periods are of course a time when betting on politics is at it's most popular and the markets on the overall winner of an election are the obvious big betting opportunities.
In the UK this is the Most Seats market although it varies by nation such as the USA where the system is different and you would instead be betting on the individual winner of the Presidential election. Aside from elections in which either prime minister's or president's are elected, you can also bet on party leadership elections, mayoral elections, referendum results or a host of political specials such as whether or not Donald Trump will complete his first term in office.
UK General Election Betting
For UK based punters, General Elections are like the World Cup of politics. During election periods, coverage of the event is virtually inescapable and the bookmakers have quickly realised the vast potential of cashing in on the fever. The most seats market will largely revolve around the two major political UK parties. Realistically speaking, only the Conservatives or the Labour party have a significant chance of winning an overall majority and using your free bet on any other party would be a bit of a long shot. Betting on the number of seats a particular party will win is also another popular market and this varies depending on the party.
The Conservatives for example currently hold more seats than any other party but insufficient to be a majority government. You can bet on either the total amount they will win or instead opt for majority betting. This basically translates as their winning margin so you could either go for over 50 or 100 for example. For the smaller parties such as the Greens or UKIP, you can bet on whether or not they will win a seat at all. OF course you can also place bets on whether the Greens or UKIP will win most seats in the next General Election though odds of 100/1 on UKIP getting most seats are totally ridiculous considering the problems they have at present and the first past the post electoral system employed in British elections.
The depth in which the bookies' go to with regards to political betting these days is perhaps best demonstrated by the fact you can now bet on individual constituency results. So if you've got some local knowledge with regards to what's going on in your area, there's the chance to have a punt and make a few quid off it. When it comes to General Elections, there really is so much that you can bet on that it almost puts football betting markets to shame! Other possible markets to use your politics free bets on include:
- No Overall Majority
- Turnout percentage
- Number of seats won by each party
- Vote percentage
- SNP to win every Scottish seat
- Size of winning majority
It's also possible to place bets on other elections held around the world. This includes the USA where you can try to win money on when President Trump leaves office and if he'll win the next Presidential election due to take place in 2020. Remember if you place a bet on when Trump leaves office, even if he loses the 2020 election, he won't leave office until the start of 2021.
It's also possible to bet on who will win the next London Mayoral election in 2020 and whether there will be another EU referendum before 2020 When countries such as France and Germany hold elections, odds will be available.
Scottish Independence Betting
Another popular market in the world of political betting in the UK is the rather thorny issue of Scottish Independence. Scots were granted greater devolved power in 1997 but since the rise of the Scottish National Party, their has been been a growing clamour for an independent Scotland and with the SNP the dominant political party north of the border, this issue does not look like going away anytime soon. There has already been a referendum held in 2014 where the vote for Scotland to remain as part of the United Kingdom (the No to independence vote) won by 55.3% to the 44.7% obtained by the yes vote.
However after Brexit, the SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon has signalled her intentions to hold another referendum despite the 2014 referendum being described a 'once in a generation opportunity'. With regards to Scottish Independence, you can currently bet on the year of the next referendum as well as whether or not Scotland will vote for independence before 2024.
Should I follow the polls?
Opinion polls are away of looking at the overall popularity of a candidate or party and are carried out regularly by various different organisations. The bookmakers will generally be in keeping with the latest polls and their odds will reflect this but we should issue a caution that the pollsters do get things wrong! In recent years this has actually been a bit of a trend in the big elections in the West.
The first of which came during the 2015 UK General Election, when most pollsters had anticipated a very tight result with virtually nothing separating the Conservatives and Labour and the prospect of another Coalition government was very likely. However as it transpired, the actual results were very different with the Conservatives performing much better than anticipated as they won an overall majority. In the UK's referendum on their membership of the European Union aka 'Brexit' the majority of polling once more was wrong as the leave vote somewhat surprisingly won and the same can also be said for Donald Trump's triumph in the 2016 US Presidential Election.
The businessman was a complete political outsider when he announced his campaign in 2015, he was priced at 25-1 to succeed Barack Obama as president. However momentum grew as his campaign wore on and as I'm sure you're well aware, Trump ended up defeating Hilary Clinton to become the US president. Closer to home, Jeremy Corbyn was priced way out at 200-1 to win the Labour party leadership contest in 2015 but the veteran left-wing candidate did indeed end up succeeding Ed Milliband. He was also expected to get widely trounced in the 2017 General Election but instead under his stewardship, Labour increased their share of the vote by 9.6%, winning 30 seats and forcing a hung-parliament in the process.
In politics the outsider can often triumph against the odds, so there is certainly value to be found out there. Polls are essentially just people's opinion on the day they have been asked and given they are usually conducted within a relatively small sample scale, their figures cannot be treated as gospel. They are however a good overall gauge for popularity and should certainly not be entirely dismissed when using your politics free bets. Big polling websites include YouGov and Ipsos MORI whilst newspapers will also carry out their own polling research amongst their readers.
The Impact of the Media on Political Betting
Much like with sport, media outlets and broadcasters will dedicated an awful lot of time and effort in to covering the latest news to all things politics related. Political stories will often lead the news agenda and this is even more so the case during the time of an election. With such vast amounts of information readily available, punters are able to ascertain the public mood and make a judgement over how well a politician or party may be faring. Whilst broadcasters must follow strict rules over impartiality and remaining neutral when it comes to politics, newspapers can openly endorse political parties.
For example in the UK, the Daily Mail has always supported the Conservative Party whilst the Daily Mirror has aligned itself to the Labour Party. Therefore when you're looking to the news for a guide in how the political landscape is shaping up, it's perhaps wise to remain slightly objective and to not be sucked in by bias when you're betting on politics.
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