The US presidential race and therefore political betting have returned to normality after President Trump left hospital on Monday 'feeling better than he did 20 years ago'. Our analyst Political Joe reviews last night's Vice presidential debate, as well as the status of betting markets and polls after these days. Don't forget to subscribe so you can stay updated to the latest experts insights every week.
Senator, you’re no Jack Kennedy
“Senator, you’re no Jack Kennedy” was a put down delivered during the 1988 vice-presidential debate. It was from Democratic vice-presidential candidate Senator Lloyd Bentsen following a comment by his Republican opponent Dan Quayle, where he compared himself to the late John F Kennedy. It has gone down in the history of US political debating, but it had little or no impact on the polls at the time.
Despite being billed as the biggest vice-presidential debate in history, there has been limited immediate impact to the betting markets in the last few hours and most likely as little in the polls.
Unlike last week’s Presidential debate, the tone of this debate between the two candidates was respectful. In place of “shut up” people heard “thank you” as Senator Harris was congratulated by Vice-President Pence on her nomination. Both candidates attacked the opposition, but they did so with much more civility and calmness than their superiors. Pence after all is clearly a more measured speaker than President Trump.
As predicted coronavirus was the first topic of the evening with Harris describing the pandemic as the “greatest failure of any administration in the history of the country”.
There was an interesting exchange between the two when it came to the military. Pence made reference to the parents of an American, killed by ISIS in Syria, who were in the audience with him. He accused the Obama administration of abandoning her while Biden was Vice-President. Harris rebutted the accusation somewhat by bringing it back to reports of the derogatory remarks President Trump made about the military.
Other topics of note were President Trump’s taxes, the economy and criminal justice reform. Pence defended the President’s tax situation by implying he was a business man who had created tens of thousands of jobs and paid plenty of related taxes. He also mentioned the “stacks” of Trump financial records that were released for anybody who wished to inspect them. On the economy Pence suggested the Biden administration would raise taxes across the board on their first day in office, while Harris accused the Trump administration of losing the trade war with China. As Pence had played to the Trump base earlier in the debate, so too did Harris play to her own when it came to criminal justice reform. She after all is a woman of colour and while clearly not the only reason she is on the ticket, it is certainly a key target area for the Biden campaign given the current racial tension in the US.
An honorary mention should be given to ‘The Fly’ who managed to find himself on Pence’s head for several minutes. It lit up social media and even motivated a tweet from Joe Biden himself. Before the night was out The Fly had more than 100K followers on Twitter!
How has the last week impacted the betting markets?
As previously discussed many major players in the betting world removed their markets when President Trump was hospitalised because of coronavirus.
The President would certainly be a man who believes the show much go on and that’s precisely what happened – he was tweeting regularly, did a controversial drive by for supporters outside Walter Reed hospital, and turned his discharge into a primetime reality TV event. Even people beyond the standard base of sceptics were asking if he in fact had the virus at all.
He left hospital pretty much at the same price he entered. What has followed have been a tough number of days on the polls and policy front. That has seen Joe Biden hit his shortest price to date in the campaign (1.50 William Hill & Betfred).
A CNN B+ poll on Tuesday had Biden 16pts ahead (57% Biden, 41% Trump). It was followed by subsequent swing state polls all of which are trending towards Biden. President Trump then also ended talks on the much needed Covid-19 Relief Bill being discussed. Indicating he would win next months election and pass his own bill after that. This move had some people even ask if he was trying to win the election at all.
There has always been a disconnect between the betting markets and the polls. Joe Biden should be a shorter price to win this election than his current market price would suggest. While this Political Joe doesn’t believe that will fully correct itself between this and the election, it’s definitely adjusting in favour of Biden over the last week.