Bookies cut odds on Labour government after Alex Salmond hints at SNP support

Ed Miliband is the favourite to be Prime Minister after the general election

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Indy Politics

Bookmakers have cut their odds on Labour forming a minority government after the general election with the Scottish National Party (SNP).

William Hill have Ed Miliband as the favourite to become the next Prime Minister at 4/5 and has taken “three figure bets” on his party entering a coalition with the SNP at odds of 13/2.

The bets are rolling in after Alex Salmond, the party’s former leader, told The Independent that the SNP could set aside its convention of MPs abstaining from votes on English-only laws to prop up a minority Labour government.

Graham Sharpe, William Hill’s politics spokesperson, said: “We have had to cut our odds for a Labour minority government from an original 7/1 to 4/1 in the face of continued support, perhaps on the basis of them forging an agreement or understanding with the SNP.

“We have taken a number of three figure bets for such an eventuality, including one of £200 from a new client based in Derbyshire.”

Scotland's former First Minister Alex Salmond

Some critics do not deem Labour's success so likely - Tony Booth, the actor and father of Cherie Blair, said the party could only win under Mr Miliband in their "f****** dreams".

"This is not play school,” he told Newsweek, claiming his son-in-law Tony Blair would stand a better chance.

He added: “With Miliband, you find yourself thinking, ‘This is a good kid, but when is he going to get into long pants? Are we just putting him up as a dummy until we find the right person?’”

Mr Salmond told The Independent he would “lay odds on a balanced parliament” that would put power in the SNP's hands and stridently ruled out any co-operation with the Tories.

“That’s an opportunity to have delivered to Scotland what we have been promised,” he added.

The former Scottish First Minister is the 1/8 favourite to become an MP in the Gordon constituency and 6/1 to become a government minister following the election.

William Hill have opened the books 2/5 on there being no overall majority after May’s election, 4/1 on a Labour victory, 9/2 on the Tories winning, 50/1 for Ukip and only 500/1 on the Liberal Democrats.

A coalition involving Ukip is on 6/1 and 40/1 for one involving the Green Party.

Ladbrokes also has Labour and Mr Miliband as the favourites, with a Labour/SNP coalition at 16/1, down from from 20/1, and the books open on Mr Salmond becoming Deputy Prime Minister.