The Candidates’ Market Report
The hits keep coming for President Trump. Based on all major nationwide polling, Joe Biden has taken the top spot every time since mid-February. But is it believable? From oversampling Democrat voters to ignoring the fact that the Electoral College will ultimately award the win (rather than populous states), something appears off with the results. Digging into the crosstabs paints a very different picture.
In almost all surveys, Trump is far more trusted on the economy than his opponent. Biden is awarded points for how the voting public feels he would deal with the COVID-19 crisis and race-relations. However, Coronavirus death figures are dropping daily and Black Lives Matter is on the verge of making itself the object of scorn after the recent killings of children; these two issues may not even be in play come election day.
And with Kanye West apparently throwing his MAGA cap into the electoral arena, one wonders what kind of an impact this will have on the black vote.
This Week’s Major Players
- Donald Trump – 47% ( + 3% )
- Congress – 17% ( no change )
What the Gamblers Say
As with most things, if you follow the money, you can’t go too far wrong. This is a selection of the odds for key races and events.
Democratic Party Nominee:
- Joe Biden – 1/33
- Hillary Clinton – 12/1
- Michelle Obama – 33/1
- Bernie Sanders – 50/1
- Andrew Cuomo – 66/1
- Kamala Harris – 100/1
- Elizabeth Warren – 100/1
The Democratic Party is committed to Joe Biden. His polling appears solid enough that the majority of the DNC can get behind him and hope for a realistic chance of success in November. But a week is a long time in politics and four months is an eternity. At some point, Biden will have to hit the campaign trail and start answering hardball questions. He will have to face Donald Trump in a debate that requires quick wits and the ability not to lose his temper over small slights. And most importantly, he will have to be on public display for weeks on end.
There is already growing concern that Vice President Biden’s cognitive ability is suffering; this has become apparent even through carefully stage-managed podcasts and interviews from his Delaware basement. How will he cope with being on the road, tired, stressed, and making speeches? At the moment, he is protected from the harsh glare of the public lights … but it can’t last much longer.
Biden’s Running Mate:
- Kamala Harris – 4/5
- Val Demings – 6/1
- Susan Rice – 6/1
- Elizabeth Warren – 12/1
- Tammy Duckworth – 12/1
- Keisha Lance Bottoms – 14/1
- Michelle Obama – 16/1
- Stacey Abrams – 22/1
- Gretchen Whitmer – 25/1
Swing State Odds
Certain states hold the keys to power in 2020. The following are the ones that President Trump needs to do well in if he intends to serve another four years. As Liberty Nation’s Tim Donner puts it:
“Florida, Arizona, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin – he must win Florida and two of the others to squeak by. In fact, if he wins the 27 other states he won in ’16, he could win just one of Pennsylvania, Michigan, or Wisconsin and still win with exactly 270 electoral votes. On the other hand, Virginia and Colorado will be telling – both swing states Trump lost in ’16. A true bellwether is probably Minnesota, which he lost narrowly and is going after hard this time. Through all of this COVID stuff, I will stick with my prediction of 350 electoral votes or more, at least for now.”
The odds of each party winning the following states:
- Florida: Democrats – 8/13; Republicans – 6/5
- Arizona: Democrats – 4/7; Republicans – 5/4
- Michigan: Democrats – 1/5; Republicans – 11/4
- Wisconsin: Democrats – 8/15; Republicans – 11/8
- Joe Biden – 8/13
- Donald Trump – 6/4
- Mike Pence – 50/1
- Hillary Clinton – 50/1
- Kanye West – 80/1
- Nikki Haley – 100/1
- Michelle Obama – 100/1
- Andrew Cuomo – 150/1
- Bernie Sanders – 200/1
- Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson – 500/1
The newcomer on the list this week is Kanye West; at 80/1, as a third-party candidate, he has virtually no chance of moving into the White House … but perhaps that’s not the purpose of his campaign. A third option on the ballot has often been a major disruptor; in November, this could make all the difference to who wins the presidency. While Kanye has appeared in public with the president, has spoken positively of him, and has even worn a red MAGA cap, will it be Trump voters who flock to this third option?
Recent polling by Rasmussen suggests that 38% of Americans believe Joe Biden suffers from a form of dementia, including 20% of Democrats. It is highly unlikely that this won’t result in some loss of support for the challenger. Add to this the likelihood of Mr. West taking a certain percentage of the black vote, and Biden could have just lost his lead.
The swing states are, as ever, the true battlegrounds. It only takes two or three percent to abandon Biden or to stay at home on polling day, and President Trump could win a second term with a landslide Electoral College haul.
Donald Trump and the Electoral College:
Number of Electoral College votes awarded to Trump:
- 251 – 269 = 12/1
- 270 – 275 = 16/1
- 276 – 280 = 16/1
- 281 – 290 = 14/1
- 291 – 300 = 14/1
- 301 – 315 = 10/1
- 316 – 330 = 10/1
- 331 – 350 = 16/1
Make sure to check back next week for all the numbers that count.
Read more from Mark Angelides.
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