British Bookmaker Bets on GOP in Congressional Elections

Odds favor the Republican Party to retain control of at least one house of U.S. Congress in elections next month, British bookmaker Ladbrokes said Thursday.

Ladbrokes favors President George W. Bush's party to retain control of the Senate, but to lose control of the House of Representatives to the Democrats, Ladbrokes spokesman Robin Hutchinson said.

Ladbrokes quotes odds of 1/3 for the Republicans to retain the Senate, the upper house, meaning that a bettor would have to wager 3 pounds (US$5.62; euro4.44) to make a profit of 1 pound (US$1.88; euro1.49).

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In the House of Representatives, the odds on the Republicans retaining control are 2/1, while the Democrats are favored at 4/11.

Ladbrokes rate the Democrats at 8/11 to win the presidency in 2008, with the Republicans at even money.

Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, a New York Democrat, is at 5/2, followed by Sen. John McCain, a Republican from Arizona, at 4-1, former Vice President Al Gore, a Democrat, at 6/1, former Sen. John Edwards at 14/1 and Democratic Sen. Barack Obama, from Illinois, at 20/1.