Upcoming Match-ups

Harris and O’Rourke Co-favorites to Win 2020 Democratic Presidential Nomination

Don Aguero

by Don Aguero in Politics News

Jan 5, 2019 · 5:00 AM PST

Beto O'Rourke
Beto O'Rourke rolls up his sleeves to campaign in Austin. Photo by Crockodile (Wikimedia Commons).
  • Kamala Harris has been the Democratic front-runner for 2020 since 2017
  • Now she’s tied for the top spot with Beto O’Rourke
  • Will Beto-mania carry through to 2020?

For over a year, Kamala Harris stood alone as the betting favorite in 2020 Democratic Party presidential nominee odds. Now she’s joined by Beto O’Rourke. The two share pole position with +450 odds. Neither have officially announced their bid for 2020, but they’re clearly preparing to run.

In the coming months, we should expect the front-runners to begin campaigning in earnest and we’ll probably see a few hopefuls throw their hat into the ring. For now, the list of favorites remains quite consistent. Apart from Beto’s meteoric rise, everything is pretty stable in the blue corner.

2020 Democratic Primary Winner Odds

Who Will Be The Democratic Nominee in 2020? Odds
Kamala Harris +450
Beto O’Rourke +450
Joe Biden +600
Bernie Sanders +700
Elizabeth Warren +750

The Rise of Beto

He may have lost the Texas Senate race, but he won the hearts of Democrats across the nation. Beto O’Rourke (+450) fought an uphill battle against Ted Cruz in 2018 and fell just 2.6 percentage points short of turning Texas blue. That’s a remarkable achievement in itself.

His ability to fund raise and drum up support has been compared to Obama in 2008, and his boyish good looks are reminiscent of JFK. We’ve already seen him excite Democrats and the fact Texas is now competitive shows that he can also win over some Republicans. So naturally, his name is being touted for 2020.

Beto-mania has swept the nation, but once America starts peeling back the layers, they may not like what they see.

But Beto will run into a few problems in the Primaries. First, he’s extremely inexperienced. He’s a young House rep who is only known for the Senate campaign that he lost. Second, his conservative voting record could turn off a large portion of the Democratic base. Beto holds an extremely safe seat so there’s no need for him to pander to conservatives, yet he often chooses to vote in line with Trump.

The bookmakers have O’Rourke as the favorite to lead the Democrats into 2020, alongside Kamala Harris. But his charm and charisma is offset by his inexperience and uninspiring voting record. Beto-mania has swept the nation, but once America starts peeling back the layers, they may not like what they see. His +450 odds are far too short.

The Frontrunners

Kamala Harris (+450) has led the betting for some time and her odds will only get shorter. She hasn’t officially declared that she’s running in 2020, but it’s safe to assume she’s all in. At +450 odds, there’s still some value in Harris. So get in now before she officially announces her run and ramps up her campaign.

Joe Biden (+600) is being sold as the Republican-friendly option for 2020, a moderate statesman who can unify the nation. But that’s all fantasy. The Democratic party is becoming more progressive and the Republican party is still overwhelmingly pro-Trump. Biden may be a media darling and a favorite among Democratic insiders, but I doubt he’ll inspire Democratic voters.

Sanders will be nearing 80 come 2020 and Warren will be north of 70, so that dampens their chances.

The two progressive heroes within the Democratic Party — Bernie Sanders (+700) and Elizabeth Warren (+750) — are also in the mix. Sanders will be nearing 80 come 2020 and Warren will be north of 70, so that dampens their chances. But both have a loyal following among progressives and benefit from widespread name recognition.

Value Picks

I’ve been high on Harris from the very start, before she was declared the favorite. Her odds have remained quite consistent in the last few months but expect them to shorten once we hit campaign season. The race is still wide open, so it’s a little tricky making the case for any candidate at +450. Still, I think there’s still a bit of value here.

Warren also deserves some serious consideration. She’s a polarizing figure and has been known to shoot herself in the foot, but she has the support of progressive Democrats who will turn out for her in the primaries. She would benefit from the momentum Bernie created in 2016 and the shifting Democratic base, which is shifting leftward.

And for a long-odds pick, it’s hard to look past Amy Klobuchar (+2600). The Minnesota Senator is known and loved in the Midwest, a region the Democrats must reclaim in order to win in 2020. Klobuchar could be their ticket to winning back the Electoral College.

Author Image