Betting on politics: the Democratic presidential nomination

Kamala Harris is a frontrunner in the race
Events in British politics are moving so quickly any odds I quote could have significantly shifted by the time this column reaches you. So let’s shift focus towards the US presidential election of 2020. One of the most interesting markets is the contest for the Democratic presidential nomination, which begins with primaries in a year’s time and concludes at the convention six months later.

According to Betfair the frontrunners are California senator Kamala Harris (pictured) at 4.7 (21.2%), Beto O’Rouke at 5.1 (19.6%), former vice-president Joe Biden at 6.2 (16.1%), Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren at 14 (7.1%), Vermont independent Bernie Sanders at 18 (5.5%), and New York senator Kristen Gillibrand at 16.5 (6.1%). There is also a long tail of other candidates, including Tulsi Gabbard, Sherrod Brown and Cory Booker. I think you can safely eliminate Sanders, because he  is too old,
O’ Rouke, because he is inexperienced, and Gillibrand, because she lacks charisma. I’d also throw in Sherrod Brown and Michael Bloomberg as long shots.
You can get better overall odds by betting the old-fashioned way with the bookies. I’d take Skybet’s 4/1 (20%) on Kamala Harris and 20/1 (4.8%) on Sherrod Brown, along with Betfred’s 8/1 (11.1%) on Biden, 12/1 (7.6%) on Warren and 20/1 (4.8%) on Bloomberg. I’d also bet with Skybet. This gives you combined odds of 48.3%. Properly weighted this means £4.13 on Harris, £2.29 on Biden, £1.59 on Warren, and £0.99 each on both Brown and Bloomberg.

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