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With 23 days to go punters make it a 21% chance that the UK will leave the EU this month

October 8th, 2019

And another ex-CON MP joins the LDs

This is all getting very tight. A new working day starts and there are just 23 to go before the article 50 deadline comes into being with the UK either leaving the EU or a further extension is agreed to.

The above betdata.io chart shows that the betting money on Betfair going on the UK not actually leaving on the due date. This is the busiest current UK political betting market and I expect to see a lot more activity in the days ahead.

An extension, of course, is something that the UK cannot insist on unilaterally. This will have to be agreed by the EU27 at their big meeting next week.

On the domestic front the fiercely anti-brexit Lib Dems see another prominent former Tory MP join their ranks. Heidi Allen, who sits for South Cambridgeshire, has been a key player in orchestrating the “Unite to Remain” effort and I assume some sort of deal has been done between her and Jo Swinson about whether she can stand in the seat at the coming general election.

This means that the Lib Dems are up to 19 MPs compared with the 11 they were on when Jo Swinson became leader only two-and-a-half months ago. I wonder whether she might be joined in the coming days by some of the other ex-CON MPds who were booted out of the parliamentary party on the orders of Cummings/Johnson.

I’m asking the bookies to put up a market on what the size of the parliamentary LD party will be on Halloween.

Mike Smithson