Praguetory’s popped up in comments (with a stammer) to offer some sage advice…
As for the impact of the defections, follow the money on the money on the betting markets.
Fair enough, given that William Hill have opened books on both upcoming by-elections.
For Ealing Southall, you get a winner only bet with Labour’s Virendra Sharma installed as 4/7 favourite, Tony Lit at 9/4 and Lib Dem candidate, Nigel Bahkai, trailing in third in the bookies’ estimation at 9/2.
Meanwhile the Sedgefield By-election gives a choice of bets.
You can take the straight win, with Labour at 1/200, the Tories at 25/1 and the Lib Dems at 33/1, or you can go for a bet on Labour’s percentage share of the vote where you’ll get evens on 60%+, 11/10 on anything under 59% and 6/1 against nailing it dead at 59-60%.
One word of caution before lumping any cash on:
There is an old Lib dem by-election trick that I am certain will be deployed by one or both of the opposition parties. They pile money on their candidate, see the odds drop, then put out a release to show “campaign momentum”. Given that the Tories and Lib Dems are slugging it out for the infamous by-election bandwagon, they might both be piling on the cash though. Could be very funny.
What was that old proverb about a fool and their money…?