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May v Corbyn: Who’ll go first?

September 4th, 2018

Paddy Power’s market on who will cease to be leader first, Theresa May or Jeremy Corbyn is an intriguing one.

I can understand why Mrs May is the overwhelming favourite but I wonder if the value might be with Jeremy Corbyn for the following reasons.

I maybe wrong on this but I feel we’ve reached a tipping point with Jeremy Corbyn these last few weeks following those comments about British Zionists, in the type of language the far right often use about Muslims.

Even Guardian columnists are writing ‘I gave Corbyn the benefit of the doubt on antisemitism. I can’t any more. The Labour leader’s comments about ‘Zionists’ in a 2013 speech were unquestionably antisemitic.’

(If Corbyn is ousted over these comments it will be one of his inner circle who wields the dagger, concluding Corbyn is now a net liability, and they are better placed to win a general election, yes I’m looking at you John McDonnell.)

Mrs May can outlast Corbyn by winning the next general election. Now that you’ve stopped laughing, hear me out.

Say Mrs May delivers a successful Brexit with little downsides to the country I’d expect her to get a polling boost from that and it might be difficult for the Parliamentary Party to oust someone leading in the polls. With Jacob Rees-Mogg and Boris Johnson potential contenders to succeed her MPs may decide to stick with nurse for fear of worse.

Another scenario is that much like Gordon Brown, the Prime Minister Mrs May is temperamentally most like, Mrs May may just end up being the leader because the alternatives are poorly organised and not exactly guaranteed to do any better than Mrs May.

(Un)fortunately I’m limited with Paddy Power so I won’t be losing much if Mrs May’s leadership ends before Mr Corbyn’s tenure.

TSE