Image default

Betting scandal ruins Sunak’s election campaign

The poll ratings for the Tories were already at rock bottom. Now a scandal is making the situation even more difficult for the British governing party. Several Conservatives had bet on the election date – even before it was announced. By C. Prössl.

Christoph Prössl

On May 22, Rishi Sunak announced a general election. The British Prime Minister had of course discussed the election date with confidants beforehand. A small circle of politicians therefore knew that Sunak would schedule the general election for July 4, even before this was officially announced.

And some of these insiders apparently ran straight to the nearest betting shop to place a bet on this date and earn a little extra money.

Time out for campaign manager

A supervisory authority is now investigating several people. Campaign manager Tony Lee had to take time off after it became known that his wife had placed bets on the election date. A parliamentary secretary is also said to have placed bets. And a bodyguard has already been suspended.

Sunak said in an interview last week that he was extremely angry about the incident. “This is a serious matter. It is right that the relevant authority investigates, as do the police.”

Loss of trust grows

Prime Minister Sunak has absolutely no use for the betting scandal. The Conservatives are far behind in the polls. A recent survey by Ipsos for the Financial Times makes the crisis clear: it shows that the Conservatives have lost a third of their electorate since January. People who said in January that they would vote Conservative now want to vote for Labour or Reform UK.

Many are undecided and many do not want to vote at all. British politics has a trust problem. The polls show this too. This betting scandal naturally contributes to this, as it illustrates that some politicians think primarily of themselves and believe that they are above the law.

The affair is reminiscent of “Partygate”, when the Conservatives were accused of not ignoring general rules and regulations during the Corona pandemic.

Sunak still rejects further Suspensions away

Because the poll numbers are so bad, the nervousness and anger of many conservatives about this incident is increasing, for example Tobias Ellwood. The MP and former Secretary of State told the BBCthe accused should be suspended.

Rishi Sunak has so far rejected this. He believes that the investigations should be completed first. Many interpret this as being too hesitant: a signal that such behavior will not be tolerated would look different.

A bodyguard who had placed a bet was suspended from duty long ago. And Craig Williams, who is part of the Prime Minister's inner circle and is seeking re-election, has long since admitted to having committed a “stupid act”. But he has not yet been suspended.

Related posts

Leave a Comment

* By using this form you agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website.