The 59th presidential election will take place on November 3, 2020. 150 days from today.

“Political conventions have been a balloons-and-bunting mainstay of American campaigns since the Republican Party gathered in Baltimore to nominate Clay for president in 1931.”

WW attended all of the Democratic National Conventions from 1968 to 2004. At the 1984 convention I was there as part of the Mondale Campaign team and in 1968 and 1972 I was there as part of the Humphrey for President campaigns. I participated in the other seven conventions as part of the Democratic National Committee team running the conventions.

Running in the Democratic Primary – It is effectively over

28 individuals announced their desire to seek the Democratic nomination for president. [See April 24, 2020 Washington Watch for the complete list.]

Joe Biden (D) former Vice President, former U.S. Senator, Age 77 is the presumptive nominee. All of the other candidates have either ended or suspended their campaigns.

While Bernie Sanders has suspended his campaign, Biden has agreed that he may hold the delegates he won through the Democratic convention,

Biden and Sanders have created joint task forces/working groups to advise the Biden campaign on six key policy areas: climate change, criminal justice reform, economy, education, health care and immigration.
The convention has been rescheduled from July to August and there is a real possibility that it will be a virtual convention or a convention that is held in multiple cities.

Since 1972, every Democratic presidential nominee has won first, second or third place in Iowa or first or second place in New Hampshire until now. Biden has broken the mold.

Selecting a Vice Presidential Nominee

Joe Biden has begun vetting potential nominees to join his ticket as a vice presidential nominee. He has announced that he will be selecting a woman.

He has appointed four co-chairs of his vice-presidential vetting team: former Connecticut Sen. Chris Dodd, Delaware U.S. Representative Lisa Blunt Rochester, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and Apple executive and former longtime Biden aide, Cynthia Hogan. The vetting teams will be led by Bob Bauer, former White House counsel, the campaign’s general counsel Dana Remus and former homeland security adviser, Lisa Monaco.

Here is a list of candidates from whom various commentators think that Joe Biden will select his running mate.

On the theory that the person selected to be Biden’s vice-presidential running mate should be qualified to be president at any time after the 2021 inaugural, the list below is categorized by their governmental experience.

U.S. Senator + Governor

Maggie Hassan – U.S Senator from New Hampshire – Age 62
U.S. Senator since 2017
Governor of New Hampshire 2013-2017
Majority Leader New Hampshire Senate 2008-2010
Member New Hampshire Senate 2004-2010

Jeanne Shaheen – U.S. Senator from New Hampshire – Age 73
U.S. Senator since 2009
Governor of New Hampshire 1997-2003
Member New Hampshire Senate 1992-1996
First woman in American history to be elected as both governor and U.S. Senator

U.S. Senator + Elected statewide position other than Governor

Kamala Harris – U.S. Senator from California – Age 55
Former presidential candidate 2020
U.S. Senator since 2017
Attorney General of California – 2011-2017
District Attorney of San Francisco –2004-2011

Catherine Cortez Masto – U.S. Senator from Nevada – Age 56
U.S. Senator since 2017
Attorney General of Nevada 2007-2015
U.S. Attorney office – District of Columbia

Governor + U.S. Representative

Michelle Lujan Grisham – Governor of New Mexico – Age 50
Governor of New Mexico since 2019
First Democratic woman elected Governor of New Mexico
First Latina elected a chief exec in the History of the United States
Member of U.S. House of Representatives 2013-2019
Bernalillo County Commissioner – 2010-2012
Secretary of Health of New Mexico – 2004-2007

Governor + Federal non-elective service

Janet Napolitano – Age 62
President, University of California since 2013
U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security 2009-2013
Governor of Arizona 2003-2009
Chair National Governors Association 2006-2007
Attorney General of Arizona 1999-2003
U.S. Attorney for Arizona 1993-1997


Gretchen Whitmer – Governor of Michigan – Age 48
Governor of Michigan – since 2019
Ingham County Prosecutor – 2016
Minority Leader of Michigan Senate – 2011-2015
Member Michigan Senate – 2006-2015

U.S. Senator + U.S. Representative

Kirsten Gillibrand – U.S. Senator from New York – Age 53
Former Presidential candidate 2020
U.S. Senator since 2009
Member U.S. House of Representatives – 2007-2009

Tammy Baldwin – U.S Senator from Wisconsin – Age 58
U.S. Senator since 2013
Member U.S. House of Representatives – 1999-2013
3 terms in Wisconsin State Assembly

Tammy Duckworth – U.S. Senator from Illinois – Age 52
U.S. Senator since 2017
Member U.S. House of Representatives – 2013-2017
Department of Veterans Affairs – 2009-2011
Illinois Dept of Veterans Affairs – 2006-2009
U.S. Army/Illinois National Guard – 1992-2014

Debbie Stabenow – U.S. Senator from Michigan – Age 70
U.S. Senator since 2001
Chair, Senate Democratic Policy Committee 2017-on
Chair, Senate Agriculture Committee 2011-2015
Secretary of the Senate Democratic Caucus – 2005-2007
Member U.S. House of Representatives – 1997- 2001
Member Michigan House of Representatives 1979-1991

U. S. Senator + Large County level elective position

Amy Klobuchar – U.S. Senator from Minnesota –Age 60
Former presidential candidate 2020
U.S. Senator since 2007
Ranking Member of Senate Rules Committee – 2017-on
Hennepin County Attorney – 1999 – 2007
Responsible for all criminal prosecution in largest county

U.S. Senator

Elizabeth Warren – U.S. Senator from Massachusetts – Age 70
Former presidential candidate 2020
U.S. Senator –since 2013
Vice Chair Senate Democratic Caucus 2017-on
Special Advisor CFPB 2010-2011
Law professor Harvard University 1992-1993, 1995-2012

U.S. House

Val Demings – U.S Representative from Florida – Age 63
Member U.S. House of Representatives since 2017
First Female Chief of the Orlando Police Department
Orlando Police Department – 20 years

Federal service – not elective

Susan Rice – Age 55
National Security Advisor to Barack Obama – 2013-2017
U.S. Ambassador to the United National – 2009-2013
Asst Secretary of State for African Affairs 1997-2001

Sally Yates – Age 60
Acting U.S. Attorney General – Jan. 20, 2017 to Jan. 30, 2017
U.S. Deputy Attorney General – 2015-2017
U. S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia 2010-2015
The first woman to hold that position
Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia – 1989

No Federal Service

Stacey Abrams – Age 46
Former Georgia gubernatorial candidate – 2018
Member of Georgia House of Representatives 2007 -2017
Minority Leader 2011-2017

Keisha Lance Bottoms – Age 50
Mayor of Atlanta – since 2018
Atlanta City Council – 2010-2018

Ursula Burns – Age 61
CEO of Xerox 2009-2016
Chairman of the Board 2010 – 2017
Chairman and CEO of VEON – 2017

Mentioned but not in the game for one reason or another

Hillary Clinton – Age 72
Democratic candidate for president in 2016
First woman nominated for president by a major political party – 2016
U.S. Secretary of State – 2009-2013
United States Senator – 2001-2009
First Lady of the United States – 1993-2001
First Lady of the State of Arkansas – 1979-1981 and 1983-1992

Donna Shalala – U.S. Representative from Florida since 2019 – Age 80
President of the Clinton Foundation 2015-2017
President of University of Miami – 2001-2015
U.S. Secretary Health and Human Services – 1993-2001
Chancellor of University of Wisconsin – Madison – 1988-1993
President of Hunter College – 1980-1988
U.S. Assistant Secretary of HUD – 1977-1980

The Odds

WW is not including the odds on potential Democratic vice-presidential nominees because so few of the potential candidates are included in sportsbetting.ag. Odds for the presidential contest are included later in the newsletter.

Republican Primary


Donald Trump – President – Age 72

Many Republican primaries and caucuses have been canceled.

There will be no debates.

The Republican nominating convention is scheduled for August 24-27, 2020 in Charlotte, NC. So far there has been no public discussion of the possible cancelation of the convention.

The General Election

The upcoming presidential election is not, in fact, a national election. On the question of which states are in play, there are as many answers as there are predictors. The following is one group of such states: Arizona, Florida, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska’s 2nd congressional district, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. Other predictors would add Nevada, Ohio, Virginia, and Colorado. Take your pick. At some later stage WW will try to score individual states.

  Trump Biden
Real Clear Politics 5/28 42.5% 48.4% Average
ABC/WP 5/28 43% 53%
YouGov 5/26 42% 45% All RV unless otherwise noted
Fox News 5/20 40% 48%
CNBC 5/17 44% 39% LV
Quinnipiac 5/18 39% 50%
YouGov 5/12 43% 47%
CNN 5/10 46% 51%
YouGov 5/5 42% 46%
Monmouth 5/4 41% 50%

43% of Americans are favorable in their feelings toward the President while 55% have unfavorable feelings toward him. Notably, those with “strongly unfavorable” feelings (43%) exceed the number who are “strongly favorable” toward the President (28%).

48% have favorable feelings toward Joe Biden while 46% have negative feelings toward him. Those with “very strongly unfavorable” feelings (31%) exceed the number who are “strongly favorable” toward Biden (23%).

Americans were asked whether Donald Trump or Joe Biden would be better on several issues. Here are the results.

  Trump Biden
Dealing with the economy 45% 42%
Relations with China 37% 43%
Coronavirus 37% 46%
Health care 33% 50%
Womens’ rights 27% 50%
[Fox News 5/20/20]

Americans trust Trump and Biden equally (47%) to direct the federal government’s efforts to help the economy recover from the coronavirus outbreak.

However, they trust Biden (50%) more than Trump (42%) to direct the federal government’s efforts to control the virus. [WP/ABC 5/28/20]

More Americans have an unfavorable impression as opposed to a favorable impression of both Trump and Biden although the margin of unfavorability is greater for Trump than Biden.

42% of Americans have a favorable impression of Trump while 55% have an unfavorable impression of him.

46% of Americans have a favorable impression of Biden while 48% have an unfavorable impression of him. [WP/ABC 5/28/20]

“As I’ve written previously, a good economy has not been the boon to Trump that it was to previous presidents. Back in January, when the president was enjoying some of his highest ratings in the economy, his overall job approval was still mired in the mid to low 40’s. As Ron Brownstein astutely observed in a CNN piece from that month, Trump was failing to convert those strong approval ratings to votes.…But Trump drew just 55% of voters who expressed such economic satisfaction when matched against former Vice President Joe Biden in the December national CNN poll; Biden held an 80-point lead among the minority of voters who called the economy “only fair or poor”, enough to top Trump overall.” [Amy Walter, Cook Political Report May 28, 2020]

Trump supporters are more likely to say they will vote in November, are generally more enthusiastic, and more likely to be registered to vote.

  Trump Biden
Will definitely vote for 84% 68%
Are enthusiastic about supporting 87% 74%
Are very enthusiastic 64% 31%
Are registered to vote 84% 78%
Are absolutely certain to vote 78% 67%
[WP/ABC 5/28/20]

What are the odds?

Here are the odds if you want to place a bet on the 2020 presidential election. On May 30 Trump was leading with -135 and Biden was in second place with +110. By the end of the day June 2, they had switched.

Joe Biden -130 (Better needs to bet $130 to win $100. A winning bet ends up with the better receiving $230.)

Donald Trump +100 (Better needs to bet $100 to win $100. A winning bet ends up with the better receiving $200.)