For The First Time Ever, Betting Markets Peg Elizabeth Warren As Most Likely Democratic Nominee In 2020

Elizabeth Warren appears at a campaign event.
Drew Angerer / Getty Images

Elizabeth Warren is in uncharted territory.

The Massachusetts senator, for the first time, has surpassed Joe Biden in betting markets as the most likely Democratic nominee in 2020. As NYMag.com reported, Warren has been surging in PredictIt’s online betting market and for the first time has overtaken the former vice president. Warren first overtook Biden on Saturday evening, with her shares narrowly topping Biden’s. The site allows people to wager on the outcome of political races in the United States and abroad, and betting markets have correctly predicted winners in a number of races.

As the report noted, the jump in betting markets comes as Warren has seen a surge in traditional polls, which many believe shows that she has a real chance to win the Democratic primary. Experts have said that Warren poses a particular risk to Biden — who remains the frontrunner in voter polls — in the key early-voting state of Iowa. As The Hill reported, experts noted that Biden has struggled in Iowa, and Warren could be popular with the state’s more progressive Democratic voter base.

“I would definitely say she’s is the largest threat to Joe Biden,” said Pat Rynard, founder of the Iowa Democratic news site Iowa Starting Line.

“My main observation is that she is the coalition candidate. She is the one in the field who can appeal to progressive activists while not scaring away the rest of the voters.”

As RealClearPolitics reported, Elizabeth Warren could be impeded by the continued presence of Bernie Sanders, who is competing for the same group of progressive voters as Warren. The commentary from Bill Scher noted that Warren may need to siphon more of Sanders’ support to win the nomination, but there appears to be more than enough progressive voters to push her to the nomination.

Scher noted that Biden has maintained a lead in polls, but that it is “hardly insurmountable” and he has generally polled in the low 30s in national polls, and even lower in the key early states of Iowa and New Hampshire.

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“If you took the two candidates with the greatest appeal on the left – Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren – and melded them together, that candidate would tie Biden in Iowa and beat him in New Hampshire,” Scher wrote.

There are still more than five months until the first actual voting and plenty of campaigning and debating to take place before then, but Elizabeth Warren is now seen as a legitimate threat to win the Democratic nomination.