Republican Primary Betting: Odds Following Mueller Fallout

Republican Primary Betting: Odds Following Mueller Fallout

Before 2020 presidential election betting can begin, there's the matter of who will represent the Grand Old Party (GOP) as the Republican Nominee.

And despite today's public release of the Mueller Report, Donald Trump (1/10) is the heavy favorite to win the Republican Nomination while Nikki Haley (20/1) and VP Mike Pence (25/1), both of which are not expected to challenge Trump, are the only potential candidates garnering sub 30/1 odds.

While at times the Republican Primary can seem like a landslide, the race - especially in recent decades - can feature a wealth of candidates with a chance, making Republican Primary betting an enticing prospect.

For the 2020 nomination, the Republican National Committee (RNC) has already announced it will put it's full support behind a Trump re-election bid.

Although still early, no legitimate Republican challengers have jumped into the race unlike the wealth of Democrats who have announced their candidacies.

2020 Republican Nomination Odds

RepublicanOddsDeclared?
Donald Trump1/10Yes
Nikki Haley20/1No
Mike Pence25/1No
John Kasich33/1No
Mitt Romney33/1No
Paul Ryan33/1No
Ted Cruz33/1No
Ben Carson50/1No

Mueller Report Doesn't Hurt Trump's Primary Odds

The Mueller Report was publicly released today with many viewing its findings as extremely damaging for President Trump. Although today's release did affect Trump's 2020 election odds, it appears his odds to win the Republican Nomination held strong.

When Trump initially ran in 2016 he had to beat out a massive field of GOP challengers but as the President looks to secure a second term, he currently sits as the only notable conservative seeking the nomination.

Aside from a few potential fringe challengers, Trump is expected to run relatively unopposed. The only prominent GOP figure mulling his own run is former Ohio Gov. John Kasich who also ran in 2016 and was the last candidate to drop out.

What if Nikki Haley Runs Following Mueller Fallout?

Nikki Haley was the Governor of South Carolina when President Trump asked her to be his United States Ambassador to the United Nations. Despite what many consider a successful run as Ambassador, Haley resigned in 2018.

Due to her popularity as both the first female Governor of South Carolina and a Congressman in the state before that, many believe Haley left her post to prepare for a 2020 bid.

And following the Mueller Report findings, Haley and other Republicans could see a window to jump in the race and take back the conservative base.

Bookmakers clearly read the same opinions because they list her as second-favourite to earn the nomination despite not making any statements to lead people to believe she is challenging Trump.

If -and that's a big if- Haley runs, Trump's odds would immediately get slashed and a competitive race would ensue but without her, the nomination is Trump's to lose.

Will Mike Pence Challenge Trump in 2020?

The legal issues revolving around President Trump including the Mueller Report have many pundits and bettors thinking the former real-estate mogul won't be around to run in 2020 leaving current VP Mike Pence left to run for the nomination.

Others believe even if the President survives his current legal woes, Pence, with the backing of traditional conservatives unhappy with Trump, will seek the nomination.

Mike Pence has vehemently denied any allegation claiming he plans to challenge Trump but not everyone is buying the VP's claims.

John Kasich Still Considering

John Kasich was the last candidate to drop out of the GOP primary in 2016. The former Governor earned 154 delegates but only won a single state, his home state of Ohio.

His popularity following the notable 2016 run has dropped, especially with him no longer holding an elected position, but many believe Kasich is the only real threat to a Trump 2020 nomination.

Although still undecided on whether he will run again, Kasich at 33/1 could be a good bet if you think Trump and Pence are not going to be around to run.

How Republican Primaries Work

The basic premise behind the selection of the Republican party candidate is that party delegates (elected officials) choose a candidate they pledge their support to.

Registered party members then vote at primaries (or hold debates at caucuses) to decide which delegates to send to the national convention.

Delegates that win the primary (or caucus) are sent to the convention, where they vote for the presidential candidate.

However, there are certain aspects of the primary process that may change, and should be factored into the betting process.

3 Things to Consider When Betting Republican Primaries

  1. Winner-Takes-All | Unlike the Democrats, some Republican primaries are winner-takes-all, meaning that candidates receiving over 50% of the vote will take all delegates. In practise, this can mean big shifts.
  2. Super Delegates | Not all delegates pledge to support a candidate; those that don't can vote any way come national convention time.
  3. Closed/Open Primaries | A closed primary means only party members can vote, but open primaries allow anyone to have an opinion. In states where a particular issue or scandal takes hold, open primaries can be very interesting.

Key Dates to Track

When you're tracking the primaries, there are some dates that always deliver fireworks.

Iowa and New Hampshire are the two states that, as the first of the primaries, always deliver a statement of intent from the candidates, and soak up 50% of the media attention devoted to the entire process.

So, when is the Republican Iowa Caucus? The first votes of the 2020 Republican Primary will be cast in the Iowa Caucus expected to take place on February 3rd, 2020.

South Carolina is considered a "firewall" primary for Republican candidates: this primary tends to be the one that kills the momentum of insurgent candidates that gained traction in Iowa and New Hampshire.

It did it to Bob Dole in 1988, to John McCain in 2000, and there'll be more to come. The GOP has yet to set a date for the South Carolina Primary but it's expected to be February 29th, 2020.

Since the 1980s, Super Tuesday has traditionally hosted most of the state primaries, and marks a pivotal moment for most candidates. When is Super Tuesday? Super Tuesday is scheduled for March 3rd, 2020.

Republican Nomination Betting Strategies

Those who are keen to analyse the primary process as it unfolds still have plenty of options when it comes to how to play a betting strategy.

  1. Back High, Lay Low | The quick shifts that characterise the primaries mean there's a myriad of risks and rewards. A tried-and-tested gambler's approach to such situations is to back candidates while the odds and long, and bet against (lay) candidates who are odds on.
  2. Hedging | If you back candidates early, you may want to hedge your bets by backing up-and-comers if your candidate faces adversity. Be sure to do the maths, though: a good hedge should at least minimise losses.
  3. Cash Out | Choosing a bookie who lets you cash out means you can lock in your earnings or minimise losses by claiming your cash back early.

If US Republican primary betting isn't enough, there’s a lot to consider in the Democratic primary betting markets. Remember, political betting odds are constantly changing, so check back here for the latest updates!

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