US Presidential Election odds - A Simple Guide

Over the coming weeks, the world's attention will turn to the United States where the next Presidential election is due to take place. Read on for everything you need to know about Presidential Election odds, key dates, who is running and how it all works.

When is the US Presidential election?

The US Presidential election will take place on Tuesday, November 3, 2020. Prior to this there are presidential debates scheduled for September 29, October 15 and October 22. Vice Presidential debate will be on 7 October.

*It may turn out that the debates will be postponed or cancelled after Donald Trump tested positive for coronavirus.

Who is running?


The incumbent Republican President is Donald J. Trump and he is running alongside Vice President Mike Pence. Trump has proven to be one of the most divisive Presidents in recent U.S. history after his controversial 2016 election campaign, which saw him shift from being a reality TV star and businessman to an unreserved presidential candidate appealing to a particular voter base with his pro-American rhetoric.

Trump initially created unrest with an attempt to ban immigrants from Muslim countries but was applauded for a tax relief package that many commentators say gave the U.S. economy a much-needed boost. His "America First" policy has angered many on the international stage, particularly China, as he believes they benefit from an unbalanced world trade system. Withdrawal from the Paris Accord climate change agreement along with the Iran nuclear deal have also been seen as extremely controversial moves. Many Americans have doubted if Trump will end up lasting the entire four-year period - particularly when he was facing impeachment related to accusations that he asked Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden's business dealings. However, Trump survived these disruptions and appears to have returned with even stronger zeal. That is why we at the moment we only offer odds 1.05 on him making it the full term (which ends on Wednesday, January 20, 2021). Back in the beginning of January 2018 the odds on Trump were as high as 2.05.

Mike Pence meanwhile remains stoic and firmly in the background as his boss repeatedly takes the spotlight. Pence has been criticised in his leadership role of the "White House Coronavirus Task Force". The Trump administration has been portrayed as slow to act and the country suffers some of the worst infection and death rates in the world.


The Democratic Party nominee is Joe Biden with California Senator Kamala Harris as his VP. Biden was President Barack Obama's VP between 2009 and 2017, with excellent approval ratings from his time as number two at the White House (in comparison to Mike Pence). Biden has been a career politician long before becoming VP for Obama. The former President trusted Biden to oversee a series of budget and economic negotiations on Capitol Hill.

Biden has previously been a Presidential runner twice before in 1998 and 2008 but said in October 2015 that he would not seek the Presidency in 2016.

His decision to run again came amid one of the most sought-after nominations for years. Initially there were dozens of potential Democratic candidates seeking the position. If Biden is elected, he will be the oldest President to take over at the White House - at the age of 78. Kamala Harris, the first black female vice presidential candidate, was also a challenger in the Democratic primary.

How does the US Presidential election work?

Nearly 139 million people voted in the 2016 election, a turnout of 55.5 percent. Each state is assigned a certain number of votes, which makes up what is known as the American Electoral College.

How exactly does Electoral College system work?

Instead of a popular vote for a President, under the "Electoral College" system, each State is assigned a certain number of "votes". There is a total of 538 electoral votes, and the number of votes each State receives is proportional to its size - the bigger the state's population the more "votes" it gets. The candidate who receives the support of at least 270 EC votes wins the election.

This is why the Democrats are massive favorites to win the popular vote at odds 1.16, but “only” odds 1.60 to win the election. Hillary Clinton won the popular vote in 2016 but lost the electoral votes and thereby the election. The odds on Trump to take the popular vote is currently 4.50 and it is perhaps the high odds for him to win this race that have seen 49 percent on the money/turnover globally backing this outcome.

When are the TV debates?

The campaign has already started, but interest will peak with the commencement of live TV presidential debates, organised by the Commission on Presidential Debates. In 2016, 84 million people tuned in to see Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton go head-to-head - a viewer record.

This year, the debates are taking place on these dates:

  • September 29 (Case Western Reserve University)
  • October 15 (Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts)
  • October 22 (Belmont University)

The live televised Vice-Presidential debate will take place on October 7 at the University of Utah.

*It may turn out that the debates will be postponed or cancelled after Donald Trump tested positive for coronavirus.

Who's in front?

At the beginning of his presidency, Trump was said in most polls to be less popular than any other President since World War II. Although approval ratings have improved slightly since, hitting a low point in December 2017, they are still below that of most modern Presidents - except for George HW Bush and Jimmy Carter (who both lost).

At the same time as people are voting for a President, they will also be voting for members of the House of Representatives and the Senate. Republicans in the House have a long way to go if they want to overtake Democrats, as the last national election (midterms) ended with a large Democratic majority.

However Republican control the Senate with Democrats losing ground 2 years ago.

National polls have consistently put Joe Biden ahead of Donald Trump, having said that the same scenario unfolded in the last election - where Hillary Clinton was the huge favourite.

Who are our players betting on?

When it comes to our Presidential Election odds, Biden is currently the favorite to win the election at odds 1.62, but our players will rather put their money on Trump to beat the odds once again and stay in The White House for a 2nd term. During the past 6 months or so we have seen 66 percent of all customers place their bet on Trump to become the winning candidate. However, the majority do not seem to have the same confidence in this becoming a reality, as the 34% backing Biden account for 40 percent of the turnover. Looking at the number of bets, the race is split 50/50, which means that customers who bet on Biden have done so more times than the ones going for the Trump odds, as their confidence in the outcome has likely increased over time. (You can take a look at the odds in our Political Betting section.)

Winning candidate (global)

% of TO

% of bets

% of activess

Donald Trump




Joe Biden




What do American voters care most about?

According to a poll conducted by Pew Research in early August, the economy is still the most important issue for voters, as it was two years ago.

But Pew found a wide divergence among voters with different voting intentions. Trump supporters were most interested in the economy, while Biden supporters chose health care and Coronavirus as the most relevant to their choice. Likewise, racial and ethnic inequality elicited a widely differing view, with 76% of likely Biden voters saying it was 'very important' to their voting intentions compared to 24% of Trump voters. Climate change remains important to Biden supporters, but Trump supporters remain indifferent. Environmental concerns have potentially taken a backseat due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Gun control - a huge issue under Obama - is only moderately important to both sets of voters.

Two-term Presidents

Although Trump was less popular after two years than Obama and Bill Clinton, one must also keep in mind that he was not far behind. At one point during his Presidency, Clinton was more unpopular than Trump is now - but was still re-elected. Obama saw approval ratings fall steadily in his first three years at the White House until they rose once more. He was also re-elected eventually with 332 EC votes to 206.

When will we know who has won?

Although the election will take place on Tuesday November 3, it is not until the following day that the final polls close. This year may turn out to be different. Recently Trump has expressed concern over possible postal voting fraud, this may result in a suppression of the final turn-out should voter confidence drop. Mail-in ballots are expected to be significantly more important this time around because many people will not visit the polling stations amid a pandemic. If all goes according to plan, the winner will be approved before Wednesday January 6, 2021 and inaugurated in the White House approximately two weeks later.

Check out all our US Presidential odds