Donald Trump Polls: Betting Firm Puts Trump As Runaway Favorite To Win Republican Nomination

Donald Trump is pulling away in the polls, and now even the bookies are marking him as a runaway favorite to win the Republican nomination.

The real estate mogul is running up a big lead in New Hampshire and starting to create distance with Ted Cruz in Iowa. With likely wins ahead in the two early states, many believe Donald Trump is poised to roll to the Republican nomination.

The British betting firm William Hill PLC, which often publishes lines on political races and has a very strong track record of picking winners, has Trump as a 1-2 favorite in Iowa and a 1-4 favorite in New Hampshire.

Market Watch reported on the odds.

“The Republican presidential candidate is the ‘red-hot favorite’ to win the Iowa Caucuses (Feb. 1) and the New Hampshire primary (Feb. 9), says Graham Sharpe, spokesman for William Hill PLC, a leading British bookmaker. William Hill has Trump as the 1-2 favorite in Iowa and the 1-4 favorite in New Hampshire.”

“The Trump bandwagon shows little sign of a slowdown,” says Sharpe. Overall, William Hill has Trump as the 5-6 favorite to win the Republican nomination and Clinton as the 1-6 favorite to win the Democratic nod.

But the outlook beyond the Republican nomination isn’t as good for Donald Trump. The firm has him listed at 3-1 to win the general election in November, behind Hillary Clinton who sits at 8-11 odds.

The Republican race must come first, and polls show that not only is Donald Trump leading the pack, but he’s picking up support among very important groups. A new Huffington Post/YouGov poll found that 68 percent of the most active Republican voters think he could win the general election. The poll defined this group as well-informed voters who have either run for or held office, served as party officials, or worked on campaigns in the past.

While this represents just a small share of overall voters, it goes to show that Trump has expanded his base beyond the already enthusiastic group that has pushed him to the top of the polls so far.

“A gap persists between two groups: volunteers, who’ve donated significant time or money, and ‘semi-pros,’ who’ve worked in politics or run for office themselves,” the Huffington Post noted. “The volunteers split solidly for Trump, while the professionals are close to evenly divided between Trump and Cruz.”

Trump is also extending his support beyond the initial round of voting. A new KTVT-TV/Dixie Strategies of Texas poll found that Donald Trump was behind Ted Cruz by just five points — 30 percent to 25 percent. While Trump had led the last time this poll was taken in October, he has kept the gap to a manageable distance despite Ted Cruz having the home state advantage. If Trump were to turn in decisive wins in Iowa and New Hampshire, he could head into Texas voting with a head of steam and by that point could have the support of any other candidates who may have bowed out.

Much will depend on Iowa, which comes first. Trump has emphasized that point, telling a crowd in Dubuque that all the efforts will be wasted if he can’t pull off the victory.

“You have to get out there and caucus, or we’ve all wasted our time,” he said, via Time.

“Unless I win, I would consider this a big, fat, beautiful—and, by the way, a very expensive—waste of time,” Trump said. “If I don’t win, maybe bad things happen.”

Donald Trump doesn’t have to hold the lead in the polls much longer. Iowa goes to vote in just a few days, with Trump still holding a small but significant lead over Ted Cruz.

[Image via Instagram/Donald Trump]