Betting may be initiated by an intellectual analysis of the odds, but then passion increases the pot and drives up the stakes. The current socio-political climate in the United States is so fractured, so damaged and damaging, that gamblers and sports bettors have turned their attention away from the card tables and sportsbooks. Instead they are heading to betting sites for their political wagering.
To explain this, let’s take a quick look at sports. Yes, you and your buddies can bet on a college basketball game, amongst yourselves. Maybe you’ll put up $20. Maybe $50.
But when the March Madness Finals rolls around—the apex of the college basketball year—you log into your online sportsbook and get ready to bet big. Passion over the final game sweeps the nation, and you want to be part of it.
This is what’s happening with the 2020 U.S. presidential election. Rather than the standard issues up for debate—joblessness, the national deficit, healthcare—the issues are now flashpoints that indicate far more insidious national divides: racism, jingoism, and resource preservation.
This is why gamblers are flocking to political betting sites. The daily news items increase interest in what may be the most defining election of the American personality since George Washington refused to run for a third term.
Volatility of the “Odds”
As approval ratings seesaw wildly between the presidential candidates, so, too, do the gambling odds. The odds dictate how much you can win by putting money down on one candidate or another.
Approval ratings are based on the emotion engendered by a candidate’s actions and words. Intellect is all well and good, but it is emotion that has carried the win in the last several elections. Passions are currently running high over these issues:
Yes, police-inflicted deaths are a concern for any community. However, because one race has been far more dramatically affected by police aggression, the issue has become a byword for deeper issues of racism and inequality.
Those in favor of obeying the police at all costs are those who are committed to the goal of trusting the establishment to know what is best. The Republican Party tends to rely on—and works to maintain–clear-cut hierarchy of power.
The Democratic Party relies more on situational analysis and open conversation, rather than taking the position that those in government positions are always right and are immune from civil actions.
This issue is currently at the forefront of national news, knocking health and economy issues off the front page, pitting neighbor against neighbor, and elevating the 2020 POTUS election to a desperate bid for power.
America First or World Collaboration
National pride is a touchy subject in the U.S. There is a nebulous and wavering line between gratitude for the actions of our political and military forefathers and the kind of excessive national fervor that puts all other nations into the category of “less worthy.”
Recent global health issues have forced Americans to ask themselves, “Should we be focusing on global wellness collaboration to increase health and prosperity for all? Or should we continue to Look Out for Number One?”
This is a flashpoint issue that will affect the election, and thus will affect the odds at sportsbooks. As noted above, the passion tied up within the issue will drive increased traffic to the betting.
Ecology vs. Economy
The cost of ecological stewardship has long been an issue of contention in the United States. This is best seen as a “short term fix” vs. “long term investment” scenario.
For instance, if the U.S. begins to log the redwoods in the far north of the state, it will provide immediate jobs for loggers and truckers. These are men and women who have had trouble finding work in the past decade due to ecological awareness of endangered resources.
Thus, eradicating ecological controls would provide an instant influx of wealth into the local economy, one of the poorest in the United States. However, it would contribute to erosion in the Trinity Alps mountain range, decimate a moderately rare tree species, and ultimately leave the loggers and truckers in the area with no income as the redwoods are taken out of the ground.
People sending their kids to school with empty bellies will vote for jobs now, while those who see the long-term benefit of maintaining the resource will vote against the logging.
Because politicians are more concerned with being re-elected now, and less concerned with whomever has to deal with the issue in 20 years, ecological legislation is brave to propose and difficult to “win.”
One U.S. political party touts the value quick fixes to the economy, at a greater cost to the long-term good, while the other main party argues vociferously in support of the opposite stance.
To Wrap It Up
Wild, well-known contests attract gamblers. When two sides are struggling, striving and straining to gain an advantage, there will be eager and interested bettors assessing the odds and placing bets. This describes the Super Bowl, heavyweight championship bouts, and now the U.S. presidential election.