June 20, 2024 - 6:00pm

→ Do the Tories have a gambling problem?

We’re used to election gambles — David Cameron rolling the dice on a European referendum, Ed Miliband deciding it was a good idea to pose beside a massive metaphor for his own political demise — but this is something else. After two Tory candidates have been investigated over betting on the date of July’s general election, and party social media managers have been compelled to delete an ill-judged attack ad featuring a roulette wheel and asking the public not to “bet” on Labour, more evidence has emerged about the Conservatives’ gambling problem.

Journalist Jim Waterson has unearthed data from bookmaker Betfair which suggests that on 21 May, there was a significant spike in bets placed on a July election date. That’s the day before Rishi Sunak publicly called a general election, and apparently when he told Tory insiders about his plans. All above board, no doubt.

→ Jill Stein does her best RFK Jr impression

America’s political establishment is once again sidelining a third-party candidate from the democratic process. And no, it’s not RFK Jr this time.

Jill Stein, the Green Party spoiler candidate who cost Hillary Clinton the 2016 election, has filed an FEC complaint over her exclusion from the upcoming presidential debate. “We think that the American people are really hungry for a real debate, not just the two zombie candidates that are being rammed down our throats again,” she told Scripps, a TV channel.

Joe Biden, meanwhile, finds himself between a rock and hard place. While another Left-wing candidate could potentially scrape some votes off his margins, having another body on the stage to argue with Trump and take up time and attention could only help him. Speaking of which, is Cornel West still running? 

→ Labour slides among young voters

Young Britons are overwhelmingly pro-Palestine in their views. As a recent UnHerd poll showed, 54% of 18 to 24-year-olds agreed with the statement that “the state of Israel should not exist”. Unsurprisingly, then, the Labour Party’s cautious approach to the Gaza war is putting a dent in its popularity with young voters. A new poll from Savanta shows Labour on 53% for people between the ages 18-25. While still miles ahead of the Tories on 11%, it is a significant drop of 8 percentage points from 61% in April.

It’s not just on Gaza that Labour has failed to schmooze Gen Z. Young people are far more likely to support green policies and won’t be happy that Keir Starmer has reneged on his £28-billion green investment pledge. Great British Energy doesn’t seem to be cutting through in its place. But where have the young ‘uns deserting Labour gone instead? The biggest gain among the age group is by Reform UK, which has risen four points. Must be the Nigel effect…