Earlier this week, I took a ridiculously early look at the betting odds for the 2024 Republican presidential nominee. It’d be silly to cover one party and not the other, so here we are taking an equally premature gander at the Democratic side of the equation.
Of course, it’s difficult to forecast where the country will be in four years – or if there will even be a “United States of America” in four years at the rate we’re going – but we can make some fairly educated guesses. Washington DC can be fairly predictable, after all.
All signs point to Joe Biden being the president-elect.
Still, Donald Trump is challenging the vote counts in several states, and election officials have refused to certify results in Michigan and Nevada counties.
Over the last two days, caches of thousands of Trump ballots have also been discovered in Georgia, so the Democrats aren’t quite out of the woods yet.
Nevertheless, for the sake of this article, we’re going to assume that Joe Biden will occupy the White House on January 20, 2021.
Betting Against Trump’s Attempt to Contest the Election Results
Considering the forces with vested interests in the former Vice President winning – Big Tech, Big Pharma, Wall St, the intelligence community, and the military-industrial complex (see: the response to Trump trying to recall troops from Iraq and Afghanistan) — I don’t see how someone as despised as Donald Trump gets multiple states overturned.
I’m not even sure any fraud did occur.
I’m just saying it doesn’t matter if it did either way because:
- those allegations are insanely difficult to prove, and
- it would take significant institutional support to have the accusations taken seriously and acted upon by anyone who matters.
In a climate such as this, where both sides live in their own realities, reinforced by echo chambers, objective proof does not exist. Thus, no evidence the Trump administration could bring forward would change anybody’s mind regardless.
Whatever he does to contest this election will be considered a coup attempt executed by a fascist leader by the people who control the public narrative. Which again, maybe he is trying to steal this election with nonsensical accusations of foul play – it’s a moot point.
Below, you’ll find Bovada’s extremely early betting lines for the 2024 Democratic nominee.
|2024 Democratic Nominee||Betting Odds|
Who Will be the Incumbent?
Joe Biden (+500)
The other variable one must consider when looking four years into the future is Joe Biden’s age/health. He’s the oldest president-elect in American history – turning 78 this week — and has shown signs of cognitive decline over the past four years.
Here’s Joe Biden discussing the Democratic primaries in 2016:
Here he is from a few months ago, in one of his more forgivable gaffes of the election cycle. Just focus on his overall ability to finish thoughts:
The fact of the matter is, just last year – and early in the Democratic primaries – Biden’s party members were vocally concerned about his cognitive health. Remember when Julian Castro called him out for forgetting what he’d just said during one of the first debates?
It only became a taboo subject when DNC officials discovered the Joe was the only candidate in the primary field who could defeat Bernie Sanders and was thus their only option to take on Trump.
The point I’m making is this:
All the signs point to Joe Biden being a one-term president at best.
If I could find political prop betting odds on it, I’d wager on him stepping down due to health reasons within the first two years of his term.
Kamala Harris (+300)
Kamala Harris was who the Democratic establishment wanted in the Oval Office all along; it just took Joe Biden to get her there after the California Senator’s abysmal showing in the primaries.
Harris went from being the odds-on favorite following the first primary debate to dropping out in December before a single state’s contest, after polling at around 2%.
The path she takes to the White House doesn’t matter; the fact is, she’s going to be there. That’s why Bovada’s oddsmakers have Kamala favored to win the nomination in 2024, not the president-elect.
When you’re pondering whether to bet on Kamala Harris, there are two things to ask yourself:
- Will Joe Biden run for reelection?
- If not, would anyone dare primary Harris as either the incumbent President or Vice President (if Biden finishes his term but doesn’t seek reelection0?
I believe there are several key factors to consider when answering that second question.
Is Trump Running in 2024?
As I mentioned in my 2024 Republican nominee article, what happens in four years is entirely dependent upon what Donald Trump chooses to do next. There have been rumors that he plans to announce his candidacy for the 2024 election as soon as he’s exhausted every option contesting the current results.
If he does decide to run again, it strengthens Kamala Harris’ position as the favorite.
Regardless of whether she’s the incumbent or seeking her first term as the outgoing VP, Trump’s presence in the race allows Democratic party leaders to resurrect the “greatest existential threat to our country” rhetoric.
Any would-be primary challengers would become instant pariahs for daring to risk dividing the party and potentially helping Trump’s bid for a second term.
Don’t Bother Betting on Progressives in a DNC Primary
As soon as the election ended, the party’s corporatist core went to war against the left-leaning progressives, blaming their “socialist” policy proposals – Green New Deal, Medicare for All, etc. — for the tight presidential race and abysmal Democratic showing in congressional races.
These arguments don’t hold up when you look at the various measures passed around the country or what the exit polls say, but when has that mattered to career establishment politicians?
Over the next four years, there will be a concerted effort to crush the budding progressive caucus within the Democratic Party to prevent another Bernie Sanders from emerging to challenge the establishment centrist agenda.
A Post-Bernie Sanders Party
In 2024, Bernie Sanders will be too old to run for president again. It’s unclear who will take up his mantle or if anyone will bother within the Democratic Party. That matters because the centrists will fall in line for whatever DNC leadership demands.
So, assuming Kamala Harris runs as the incumbent in 2024, there are only three progressives with betting odds who could primary her:
- Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez,
- Andrew Yang,
- and Sherrod Brown.
Of those three, only Sen. Brown has more than a single term in office under his belt.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
AOC is immensely popular, has clashed heads with Nancy Pelosi’s outdated corporatist ways while advocating for progressive policies, and endorsed Bernie Sanders’s presidential run this year.
She’s the most obvious choice to be Bernie’s heir apparent, but she’s still a freshman member of congress. Ocasio-Cortez has already expressed her frustration and fatigue from battling Democratic leadership, so it’s unlikely she’ll want to attract the kind of negative attention primarying an incumbent Democrat so early in her political career.
Her best bet is to wait for the group of corrupt octogenarians running the DNC to retire before making another push to pull the party left.
What if a Progressive Primaries Kamala Harris?
So, let’s say Andrew Yang or Sherrod Brown (or both) takes a shot at the 2024 Democratic nomination – assuming Donald Trump isn’t running on the Republican side.
(If Trump is around, any act of defiance will be treated as nothing short of treason – how dare they disrupt the Democratic Party’s precious “unity?!”)
A progressive challenger undoubtedly changes the entire complexion of the 2024 primaries, but not in the ways you might expect.
If the last two election cycles have taught us anything, it’s that a left-wing candidate will not be allowed to win.
This year, the DNC was prepared for Sen. Sanders and derailed his campaign using multiple strategies they didn’t try in 2016.
- They learned from Donald Trump’s outsider run in the GOP, which was only made possible by the broad field of moderate Republicans splitting the traditional conservatives’ vote.
Instead of taking their chances, everyone dropped out before Super Tuesday to coalesce behind Joe Biden, after Rep. Jim Clyburn pulled some strings and handed the eventual president-elect a game-changing victory in South Carolina.
- Democrats also used their trusted media outlets more effectively. Bernie Sanders won the first three primaries – a feat that has only been accomplished by eventual nominees historically – but the news networks never covered him like a frontrunner.
His win in Iowa was marred by Pete Buttigieg prematurely claiming victory after the suspicious “Shadow Inc app” misappropriated the state delegates, stealing the momentum usually afforded to the winner. After Bernie’s massive triumph in Nevada, the next 48 hours were dedicated to comments he made decades ago, praising Cuba’s literacy rates.
Yet, when Joe Biden won his first primary in South Carolina, after abysmal finishes in the first three states, the next three days were dedicated to the former Vice President’s “incredible comeback”.
- The DNC also came prepared to weaponize identity politics against Sanders – a move they often use to quiet populist candidates. First, they attacked him for being an old white guy, which was dropped when it didn’t stick – Bernie was the overwhelming favorite with Hispanics and young Black voters, after all.
Then, they tested the same accusations of anti-Semitism that had just derailed a similar progressive figure in the UK, Jeremy Corbyn, but that didn’t work because Sen. Sanders is Jewish.
Finally, the Dems had Elizabeth Warren backstab her old “friend,” claiming he was sexist because, at a dinner in 2018, he allegedly told her “a woman can’t win against Trump.” This accusation was dubious at best, however, since Bernie approached Sen. Warren in 2016 to primary Hillary, and only ran himself when she refused.
And I’m not even going to address the suspicious exit poll anomalies or unusually long voting lines in precincts featuring large populations of young and minority voters.
Most importantly – remember, in 2016, the DNC was caught rigging the primary against Bernie Sanders when Hillary Clinton’s emails were leaked.
A lawsuit was filed over the revelations by a group of progressive voters.
However, it was shot down after the Democratic Party’s counsel successfully argued that party leadership has no legal obligation to accommodate primary voters’ will. The primaries aren’t certified electoral college contests, so the Democratic leadership is within their legal right to choose a nominee in a “smokey backroom” if they so choose.
So, there’s a zero percent chance Andrew Yang or Sherrod Brown will be allowed to usurp Kamala Harris at the top of the Democratic ticket following her stint in the Biden (or Harris) administration.
However, their presence in the race may change how the party approaches the primaries.
Other Viable Options
If Donald Trump is not running AND a Democratic Party outsider decides to primary Kamala Harris, then the DNC will probably utilize a similar strategy as in 2020.
Rather than risk a one-on-one showdown like in 2016, which could hurt Harris’s popularity, they’ll flood the field again with a variety of establishment-friendly candidates.
Despite what the Democrats argued in court, they want their primaries to have the appearance of a fair electoral contest, so they won’t come right out and say the progressive “outsider threat” can’t win the nomination. But make no mistake, the main goal of the field of candidates will be to defeat that challenger.
However, Kamala Harris could still lose her nomination in this situation.
If she has a similar showing as in 2020, the party could be forced to go ahead with another centrist. They would do their best to clear the field for her, but if the soon-to-be Vice President is polling at 2% again, it will be hard to hide her lack of support.
We know they won’t nominate a progressive, eliminating AOC, Sherrod Brown, Andrew Yang, and Elizabeth Warren.
All for Nothing
Warren did everything the DNC wanted and even stabbed her so-called friend in the back on behalf of the party leadership.
She still was blackballed from an appointment in the Biden administration for merely suggesting progressive economic policies in the past. That tells you everything you need to know about her – or any other left-leaning Democrats’ — chances.
They’ll also want to avoid the optics of replacing Kamala Harris with a straight white male, which eliminates Andrew Cuomo, Michael Bennett, and Beto O’Rourke. Michael Bloomberg is at least Jewish, but we saw in 2020 what a terrible candidate he was on the national stage, spending over a billion dollars to win only the American Samoa primary.
The following potential candidates are the most likely to be nominated if Harris’s worst-case scenario happens.
Pete Buttigieg (+1500)
If Joe Biden fails to finish his first term, Kamala Harris will become president. She can then nominate a replacement of her choosing for the vacant VP spot – though the nominee will be subject to congressional approval.
I strongly suspect that if this were to happen, Harris would pick Pete Buttigieg as her Vice President. He was instrumental in helping Kamala prepare for her one debate, role-playing as Mike Pence for her preparations.
He was also one of the only Democratic candidates to win delegates and challenge Bernie Sanders in the 2020 primaries. Then, when it came time to take one for the team, he dropped out and endorsed Joe Biden despite being ahead of the eventual president-elect in the pledged delegate race.
A politician like Pete Buttigieg doesn’t fall on his sword without some promises in return. DNC leadership owes him one.
Unfortunately, that hurts his 2024 odds since he’d be the last person to primary Kamala Harris under those conditions.
So, if you’re betting on Pete, you’re hoping Joe Biden finishes his term before declining to run again, potentially leaving the nomination open for competition.
Stacey Abrams (+1200)
Stacey Abrams is another rising star in the Democratic Party who is owed big. Nobody was more instrumental in flipping Georgia for Joe Biden than Abrams, which was critical to the president-elect’s electoral college victory.
Amy Klobuchar (+2500)
Amy Klobuchar’s 2020 candidacy was derailed by the George Floyd killing when it came out that as a district attorney, she refused to bring charges against the police officer responsible for his death when he committed other acts of police brutality in the past.
Still, she was a relatively strong candidate at times. Without someone like Bernie Sanders around to make the centrist Democrats look conservative and corrupt by comparison, Klobuchar could make another run at the presidency. She’s oddly charismatic and hails from a crucial Midwestern state.
Cory Booker (+2500)
Cory Booker is another charismatic, polished politician that underwhelmed in 2020 when that’s not what the electorate wanted. Democrats – and Americans in general – have shown a strong desire for a populist candidate in recent election cycles, someone who will do more than make impassioned speeches full of lots of empty platitudes.
This is a common occurrence in periods of sustained economic downturns. Nobody was a better, more charming orator than Barack Obama. Yet, after all of his promises in 2008, he did nothing in office but bail out big banks at the expense of the poor and middle class.
That said, there’s no guarantee the Democratic Party will allow another Bernie Sanders type into the primaries to make candidates like Cory Booker seem like another empty suit owned by big corporations. Furthermore, if there’s anyone who might be able to pull off a faux progressive candidacy, it’d be Sen. Booker.
He’s a longshot — particularly if you’re relying on Joe Biden to finish his term, Donald Trump not running, and a lack of real progressives in the primaries – but stranger things have happened in American politics.
This one time, a reality TV show host with decades of incriminating quotes on file ran for president and shocked the world.