Sports betting have long been a favourite of the people in the United Kingdom. Individuals put their money on everything from Premier League matches to horse racing events like The Grand National. However, political betting has been around for just as long. While much of it is online now, there was once a time when televisions used to show land-based betting shops posting their prices for a UK election.
The United Kingdom is a democracy; this means politics is a two-way street. So, it’s not surprising that there’s been a long interest in political betting in the country. That said, this interest has increased over the last ten years or so. In part, this has to do with the move of exchanges and sportsbooks online. Politics starting to dominate the media landscape has also played a role.
Political betting in the UK has been legal and regulated since 1960. That year, the British parliament approved the Betting and Gaming Act. This legalized different forms of gambling, including political and sports betting, and authorized legal wagering on a national level.
Types of Political Wagering
Today, bookmakers cover various types of political elections. This includes home general elections but also odds on presidential races in other countries too, such as France, Australia, and the United States. The transition to the online sphere has seen exchanges and sportsbooks in the UK allow punters to wager on political outcomes online. For instance, punters can explore the London mayoral election odds online before placing their bets. Looking at the betting odds beforehand can help individuals get a sense of where the election and the candidates are at during that moment.
There are many types of political bets offered by exchanges and sportsbooks. This includes moneyline political bets and political totals, which centre around how many times something will happen in an election, such as how many times a candidate will do or say something in particular. Bookmakers in the United Kingdom also offer political prop bets.
The United Kingdom remains one of the few countries that does offer wagering on this type of event. Its 61-year relationship with political betting has cemented it in the country’s history and culture, alongside bingo and betting on sporting odds, like who will win the Premier League and where will Harry Kane be next year.
People who are fond of sports betting often try their hand in politics. The United Kingdom’s government has changed over the years, but so too has its gambling industry. The move into the digital sphere led exchanges and sportsbooks to offer online wagering, which has seen more demographics become involved in political betting. Doing so online is much easier and more convenient. So it’s not surprising that political betting is as popular as it is, regardless of whether it is the election of a mayor or the race to govern the entire country.