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Political News: Biden’s Vice Presidential Pick

— June 16, 2020

Sportsbooks everywhere are eagerly taking bids on who that might be, serving up a smorgasbord of choice bets for political enthusiasts to wager on.

By all accounts, Joe Biden is the presumptive Democrat nominee – only needing to transcend the delegate threshold that is required to officially get the nod from the Democratic National Congress (DNC), which should happen sometime this summer. Thus, the Democratic spotlight now is firmly trained on Biden’s choice of running mate: Who will former vice president Joe Biden pick to be his vice president as he runs against the incumbent president Donald Trump in the 2020 US Elections?

Sportsbooks everywhere are eagerly taking bids on who that might be, serving up a smorgasbord of choice bets for political enthusiasts to wager on. Meanwhile, media opinion polls are keenly taking the measure of the likely candidates; the scope of which is narrowed down to chiefly female politicians, given Biden had announced during a CNN hosted debate on March 15 his choice would likely be a woman. Arguably, to broaden his appeal amongst voters and unify a Democratic Party that is keen to lay down a clear course of action for the next decade. 

During the CNN-Univision debate in Washington, DC Biden said, “If I’m elected president, my Cabinet, my administration will look like the country, and I commit that I will, in fact, appoint a, pick a woman to be vice president.” [Source: CNN politics]

Some of the vice-presidential candidates vying to be Biden’s running mate had tried their hand in the presidential race previously before bowing out; thereby, voters and bettors already have a sense of their White House merit. Even Biden acknowledged as much when he noted their leadership-readiness during the same Democratic debate in Washington. 

“There are a number of women who are qualified to be president tomorrow. I would pick a woman to be my vice president.” Biden said. [Source: CNN politics]

Will Biden choose from those handfuls of women who ran the primary gauntlet for the Democratic presidential nomination? He might; that is if the odds are anything to go by. Senators Elizabeth Warren (Massachusetts). Kamala Harris (California), Amy Klobuchar (Minnesota), and Kirsten Gillibrand (New York) are all short-odds on favorites at 5Dimes Sportsbook to get the nod from Biden.

Then again, he might settle on one of several outliers who are trading in political betting markets, such as Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer, Florida House Representative Val Demings, or former Georgia House Representative Stacey Abrams, to name a few. Women who represent some of the many political hopefuls who are earnestly parading their wares on the vice presidential catwalk, participating in increasingly superfluous interviews that leave no doubt about the heights of their ambitions. As far as their market value goes though, 5Dimes tips them as underdogs of +1000 or higher. 

In a recent CBS News poll, four of these women enjoyed double-digit approval ratings among Democrats, and not surprisingly Elizabeth Warren emerged as the preferred choice to be Biden’s vice president. Warren led the way with 36% approval. 

Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren (D); United States Senate / Public domain.
Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren (D); United States Senate / Public domain.

How much stock one should put in opinion polls is debatable. That the Massachusetts senator was highly favored is thought-provoking but it’s hardly proof of a decisive edge over the rest of the field of candidates. At best, all it might suggest is that Warren is the most recognizable vice presidential candidate. Out of all the female front-runners, Warren persevered the longest in the 2020 US presidential race, before bowing out in early March of this year.

California senator Kamala Harris emerged with 19% approval in the same poll, while Minnesota senator Amy Klobuchar’s garnered 13% approval. One could argue the pair enjoyed double-digit approval ratings partly because they too had run the gauntlet of the Democratic presidential nomination. (Harris dropped out in December 2019, while Klobuchar dropped out a week before Warren did.)

Polling can be misleading and should never be taken as unequivocal evidence of political inclination. Yet, the CBS News poll did reveal a very interesting twist when former Georgia House Representative Stacy Abrams emerged with 14% approval in the same poll – essentially nudging ahead of Amy Klobuchar, even if ever so slightly. Stacy Abrams didn’t run in the presidential race, but she’s giving the vice-presidential candidates a run for their money. At least, according to the polls.

Speaking to CNN’s Christiane Amanpour recently, Abrams said, “as a woman, as a person of color, as a woman of color, it is my responsibility to answer honestly and forthrightly, and if the question is about whether I’m competent and qualified for the job my answer must be unequivocal.” [Source: CNN politics]

Abrams was the Democratic party’s nominee in the 2018 Georgia gubernatorial election (lost to Brian Kemp). Abrams was also the first African-American female major-party gubernatorial nominee in the United States and she became the first African-American woman to deliver a response to the State of the Union address (February 2019). 

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