This year may have been all about Alex Salmond and Nigel Farage. But who should we watch out for in 2015?
Vince Cable or / and Tim Farron
Next May there will probably be another hung parliament. The Liberal Democrats could find themselves in with a chance of being a coalition partner of either Labour or the Tories. If they end up doing the former then Labour might be more comfortable working with Cable or Farron than Nick Clegg. Vince Cable was in fact a former Labour councillor. Furthermore, there is a chance that Nick Clegg could lose his seat in May, which would prompt a leadership vote. Both Cable and Farron are the two men to watch out for in the Liberal Democrats.
According to William Hill, Farron has the edge. His odds of becoming the next Lib Dem leader are 5/4, whilst Cable’s are 4/1, according to William Hill.
Whilst Carswell has been a prominent figure this year, having won the Spectator’s insurgent of the year, the country will likely see more of him in 2015. Carswell won his seat back with almost 60% of the vote. He is clearly a popular representative, and something extraordinary would need to happen for him to lose his seat in May. Further UKIP gains are likely but uncertain, so depending how things go in the rest of the country Carswell - and perhaps Mark Reckless - will be a leading voice for UKIP in Westminster. Even if Nigel Farage gets a seat, Carswell will still remain someone to watch out for in 2015.
William Hill's odds for him becoming the next UKIP leader are 5/2. Patrick O'Flynn has the same odds, whilst Reckless' are 33/1.
The Spectator recently said Carswell:
"...showed that a party once denounced as band of fruitcakes and loons had somehow become a force so formidable that the Conservatives conceded defeat at the first whiff of an opinion poll.”
Carswell will not disappear quietly.
If David Cameron loses the election to Labour then it could be Boris’ time to shine and stand for leadership. He certainly has the determination to succeed and situation could be just right for him. See the full article on Boris Johnson's chances in 2015:
Whilst she and Andy Burnham recently denied claims that they planned to “present a joint offer” in the event of Ed Miliband stepping down, if Labour lose the general election then Miliband will quit. Yvette Cooper is someone who could enter the next Labour leadership race, and she could win.
The same can be said for Andy Burnham.
The odds for Cooper becoming the next Labour leader are 5/2, whilst Burnham’s odds are 2/1, according to William Hill. These are two figures to watch in 2015.
Nicola Sturgeon and Jim Murphy are two to watch out for in Scotland. Scotland is a key battleground in the 2015 general election and these two figures will be deicisive in the election. Nigel Farage is of course one to watch out for once more as he could get into parliament. Additionally, Natalie Bennett leader of the Green party of England and Wales is a figure to watch out for, particularly with the Greens gaining an MEP in this year's European election.
And of course there will be a few dark horses. 2015 will certainly be an interesting political year.