US election odds swing in Joe Biden’s favour as he takes lead in Wisconsin

Published: 4 November 2020

Post Desk : Democratic candidate Joe Biden was back as clear favourite to win the U.S. presidential election in online betting markets on Wednesday – a reversal of fortune for President Donald Trump who had seen his odds tumble overnight.

The shift, according to data from three odds aggregators, came after Mr Biden overtook Mr Trump in the battleground state of Wisconsin, with an estimated 89 per cent of the vote tallied there.

Victory there would push the 77-year-old closer to the magical 270 electoral college votes needed to win the US Presidential election.

However the result remained unclear on Wednesday as two other key Midwest states – Pennsylvania and Michigan – were yet to finish counting their ballots. Mr Trump could still be declared the victor were he to win both.

British-based Smarkets exchange was giving Mr Biden a 78 per cent chance of becoming the next president, while New Zealand-based predictions market PredictIt had Mr Biden at nearly 80 per cent. Mr Trump’s chances on Smarkets were sitting at 21 per cent – a massive drop from nearly 80 per cent overnight.

“Taking the lead in Wisconsin could be the turning point with the Democrat now also projected to win Nevada and Arizona, which would likely give him the 270 electoral college votes he needs for victory,” Betfair spokesperson Sam Rosbottom said.

Bettors on Betfair were giving Mr Biden a 66 per cent chance to win by breakfast time on the East Coast.

The President earlier falsely claimed victory over Mr Biden with millions of votes still uncounted.

In a statement from the White House in the early hours of the morning, Mr Trump claimed “we have already won” – and vowed to go to the Supreme Court in a bid to stop the tallying of thousands of postal votes.

Mr Trump has repeatedly claimed the reliance on mail-in votes will result in mass electoral fraud. They have been delivered in their millions in an election uniquely affected by the coronavirus pandemic which has killed more than 230,000 Americans.

“Millions and millions of people voted for us tonight,” he said.

“A very sad group of people is trying to disenfranchise that group of people and we won’t stand for it. We will not stand for it.”

“Last night I was leading, often solidly, in many key States, in almost all instances Democrat run & controlled. Then, one by one, they started to magically disappear as surprise ballot dumps were counted,” he wrote. “VERY STRANGE, and the “pollsters” got it completely & historically wrong!”

Mr Biden has pinned his hopes on the so-called “blue wall” states of Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania that sent Mr Trump to the White House in 2016.

Last night Mr Biden urged patience as he appeared in front of supporters in Delaware, saying the election “ain’t over until every vote is counted, every ballot is counted.”

“It’s not my place or Donald Trump’s place to declare who’s won this election,” Mr Biden said. “That’s the decision of the American people.”

The 2020 election was shaping up to be the biggest betting event of all time, betting companies said, with one player on Monday placing a record-breaking bet of £1million ($1.3 million) on a victory for Mr Biden.

The Democrat had been favoured before election day, but his chances according to oddsmakers plunged to less than one-in-three overnight, after Mr Trump pushed ahead in the swing state of Florida.

Betfair Exchange said a record £425 million has been bet on the outcome of the winner so far – more than double that of 2016.