Labor Day in the US marks the unofficial beginning of the stretch drive of election campaigns for both the Republican and Democratic parties. Candidates will hit the trail and increase their visibility from now until November 3. Providing their opposition plenty of material which they will use to sway the throng of voters that have not made up their minds yet.
While the polls point to the decision baked into the minds of most voters, expected gaffes and controversy will likely shape most weeks going forward. Dominating the news cycles on any given day has traditionally translated to a polls and odds bump. However, the current President has dispelled the notion that “any news is good news”. Last week saw a tangible tightening of the races with regard to the odds. Although, that tightening hasn’t necessarily translated in the polls, both nationally and the all-important swing states.
Will Trump’s apparent views on fallen soldiers affect his standing with voters and oddsmakers? Will the current President’s sometimes off-the-rails campaign stops help him rediscover his 2016 magic? Will “Basement Joe’s” accelerated travel schedule give him some momentum through the last two months of the campaign season? Let’s take a peek at some updated election odds on the best sportsbooks in this Labor Day Acceleration Edition.
Have the Odds Caught up to the Polling?
A glimpse at the US Election Betting Odds from last week revealed an interesting trend. The odds were in stark contrast to the overwhelming number of polls conducted around the US. At the beginning of the week, BetOnline had Joe Biden at even odds of winning in November, down from -120 the week before. Donald Trump was a -120 favorite to win a second term at the beginning of the week – his best showing in months. All of that despite Joe Biden holding a steady 7+ point lead in the National Polls.
But this being the insane US Election Betting season it is, things have switched again. It looks the betting odds are starting to catch up to the polls. Entering this week, the website FiveThirtyEight had Biden up in an average of all National Polls 50.5%-43% and the odds have followed suit.
BetOnline currently has Biden as a -105 favorite with Donald Trump close behind at -115 (visit our BetOnline Review). Some betting sites still have Trump the favorite, however – it will be interesting to see if it changes in the near future. At this point, sites like Bovada and Bookmaker that have Trump as betting favorite may offer some value to bettors out there.
Potential Issues With the Military
The story published last week in the Atlantic about Donald Trumps’ feelings about fallen and wounded soldiers, threatens to leave a stain with military voters that leaned heavily in his way in 2016. Trump won veterans and active military members by a 27-point margin over Hillary Clinton – part of the reason he posted the enormous upset to become President of the United States.
Active military and veterans make up about 12% of voters. Slightly more than the Hispanic block of voters in the US, and slightly less than voters between the age of 18 and 29.
It remains to be seen if Donald Trump will suffer from his alleged comments about the military – he has vehemently denied such slights on those who have served. It may just further the notion that his base of support is completely baked in. As it stands, however, 60% of troops disapprove of his Presidency according to a Military Times poll.
Wading in on Sports
It will be yet another critical week indeed in the relationship between sports and pop-culture. Trump’s frequent punching bag – the NFL kicks off its season with societal unrest still raging across the US. It could be Colin Kaepernick on steroids this week, as players are certain to kneel during the National Anthem.
Trump’s son Eric has gotten out in front of the situation by tweeting on Monday night: “Football is officially dead”. This came in response to the Dallas Cowboys’ players being given the “green light” to protest.
The President has already made his feelings known about college football. He has used his Twitter feed to encourage the Big Ten to commence with their season. Apparently, he’s done it in an attempt to woo some voters from Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin – home of some of the Big Ten teams. Interestingly, Trump has not said a word about the Pac-12, which includes teams from Washington State, California, and Oregon. States that Trump doesn’t appear to have a chance in November.
Consequential weeks are officially the norm, not the exception during the 2020 US Election Betting season. This week, like most between now and November, has a chance to determine the race. Anything can happen, and it probably will. Stay tuned!