The Candidates’ Market Report
Have Republican voters been under-represented in the swath of polls that give Joe Biden a substantial lead ranging from seven to ten points? Comms director for the Trump campaign, Tim Murtaugh, seems to think so. Referencing recent polling that uses just 24% Republican voters, he said, “Twenty-four percent — less than a quarter of the country. That compares to Republican turnout according to exit polls in both 2016 and 2018 of 33 percent, so they’re under-sampling Republicans by 9 points in that poll.”
According to CNN exit polling in 2016, Republicans were 33% of the vote, exactly the same as in the 2018 midterms. Why would supposedly reputable polling outfits under-sample GOP supporters by 9%?
Rasmussen, on the other hand, uses the exit poll data for 2018 to get their sample group. Their latest polling gives Biden just a 2% edge.
This Week’s Major Players
- Donald Trump – 49% ( + 1% )
- 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
According to the latest betting odds, Joe Biden is on track to win the popular vote. The odds of him getting five million or more votes than Trump are at 1/4. In 2016, Hillary Clinton won almost three million more votes than Trump yet lost out to the Electoral College vote. With over-hyped polling and under-represented Republican voters in polls, could the betting markets be a victim of salacious surveys?
With just a few weeks to go until the Democratic National Convention, Biden is a 1/33 cert to win the nomination. However, with Bernie Sanders and the democratic socialist wing of the party being a sizeable force, one wonders how Biden will alienate his more moderate supporters with the concessions he will almost certainly be forced to make.
Biden’s Running Mate:
- Kamala Harris – Even
- Susan Rice – 13/5
- Tammy Duckworth – 6/1
- Karen Bass – 6/1
- Elizabeth Warren – 12/1
- Val Demings – 12/1
- Keisha Lance Bottoms – 14/1
- Michelle Obama – 16/1
- Stacey Abrams – 22/1
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 – 4/7; Republicans – 5/4
- Arizona: Democrats – 8/13; Republicans – 6/5
- Michigan: Democrats – 1/5; Republicans – 11/4
- Wisconsin: Democrats – 3/10; Republicans – 11/5
- Joe Biden – 8/15
- Donald Trump – 7/4
- Hillary Clinton – 50/1
- Mike Pence – 75/1
- Nikki Haley – 100/1
- Michelle Obama – 100/1
- Kanye West – 150/1
- Andrew Cuomo – 200/1
- Bernie Sanders – 200/1
- Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson – 500/1
One of the most overlooked aspects of polling is that of voter enthusiasm. Some polls only use respondents who are either “likely” or “very likely” to cast a ballot. Many, however, do not.
According to a recent CBS/YouGov poll (which, incidentally, under-sampled Republican voters), the enthusiasm gap between Trump voters and Biden voters paints a stark picture. The respondents were asked why they were voting for their chosen candidate; Biden supporters reported:
- Mainly because I like Joe Biden . . . 27%
- Mainly because Joe Biden is the Democratic nominee . . . 23%
- Mainly to oppose Donald Trump . . . 50%
Trump supporters asked the same question responded:
- Mainly because I like Donald Trump . . . 68%
- Mainly because Donald Trump is the Republican nominee . . . 15%
- Mainly to oppose Joe Biden . . . 17%
Just 27% of Team Biden actually plan to vote for their candidate because they like him. That is a troubling prospect for the former vice president.
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 = 8/1
- 316 – 330 = 7/1
- 331 – 350 = 12/1
Make sure to check back next week for all the numbers that count.
Read more from Mark Angelides.