This article first appeared at betting.betfair.com on 3rd September 2020
Unofficially and metaphorically, the starting pistol for the closing, intense stretch of the general election campaign is fired following the Labor Day holiday weekend. According to the signals coming from Betfair markets, Joe Biden and Donald Trump head into it with virtually equal chances. You can see all the latest from the key swing states on our carousel.
Betting virtually tied ahead of Labor Day
Indeed at one point yesterday, the odds implied a perfect 50/50 split. Biden later edged marginally ahead and remains the slight favourite. As I write he is rated 50% for the win, compared to 49% for Trump. For the very latest odds, check out the Betfair Swing-o-Meter on the US election homepage.
This in spite of the assumed reasons behind Trump’s extraordinary betting surge disintegrating yesterday. He has not enjoyed a significant post-convention bounce in the polls to mirror his advance in the betting. Far from it.
There had been some confusion, due to a dearth of high-quality live interview polls during the second half of August. So when the likes of Emerson, or less plausibly Rasmussen or Trafalgar, published positive numbers for Trump, they had a greater impact than usual on the news cycle.
Latest polls make grim reading for Trump
No longer. A vast array of new surveys arrived yesterday and they were almost all bad news for Trump. Here are the latest national numbers, along with the Fivethirtyeight rating for each pollster.
SELZER & CO (A+): BIDEN +8
SUFFOLK (A): BIDEN +7
IBD/TIPP (A-): BIDEN +8
QUINNIPIAC (B+): BIDEN +10
CNN (B+): BIDEN +8
YOUGOV (B): BIDEN +9
Of course the presidency won’t be decided by the popular vote and it is quite possible that Trump could lose by 4% or so and still prevail in the electoral college. To that end, however, the numbers from individual states are similarly grim.
No Wisconsin boost for Trump despite violence
Most significantly, the state that has seen the worst violence in recent days shows no sign of turning towards Trump. On the day the President made his controversial visit to Wisconsin, respective surveys from Fox News (A-) and Morning Consult (B/C) recorded Biden 8% and 10%. Nor is there any evidence of his ‘Law and Order’ messaging cutting through.