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Affluent Christian Investor | September 21, 2023

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Data is Clear: Trump Helps Jeb and Hillary

It has now been two weeks since the first Republican Presidential debate, and opinion polls are now being released. The changes in the past two weeks have been predictable: Donald Trump rises, Jeb Bush falls, and previously-unknowns such as John Kasich are now actually showing up in polls. What is more interesting are the changes seen in the political betting markets.

Averaged Probability of Individual (R) Candidates for 2016 Election

This chart shows the averaged probability from over a dozen political betting markets that have assigned to the various Republican candidates since May 16th, 2015.

One of the more interesting changes is the rise of Jeb Bush. Opinion polls show a sizable decline in his favorability among Republican voters, but in the eyes of political bettors, his debate performance increased his already high chances of winning the nomination. Jeb’s performance in the debate was relatively inoffensive. He didn’t say much, and what he said wasn’t particularly controversial, which does not win support in the early stages of an election.

We can also see a clear trend regarding Trump. As he rises, so does Jeb, and both Rand Paul and Marco Rubio – two non-establishment candidates – fall. Trump’s controversy during and after the debate continue to distract media attention away from non-establishment candidates.

Probability of Party Outcome for 2016 Election

This chart shows the probability of a Democrat or Republican candidate winning the Presidency.

The debate had little impact in this category, except for a small decline in the chances of a Republican win, and a rise in the chances of an independent win. This is obviously due to Trump saying he wouldn’t rule out running as an independent.

Averaged Probability of All Candidates of 2016 Election

This chart shows the probability of an individual candidate winning the Presidency.

The debate had little influence in the chances of the top 4 candidates in the general election. Hillary, Jeb, Rubio, and Walker were essentially unaffected. The non-establishment candidates had more variance, with Rand Paul’s chances falling considerably, Donald Trump’s going up from just under 1% to 4%, and Joe Biden disappearing from the top 8.

While the debate did have a large impact on the candidates standing in opinion polls, it did not have the same effect on political bettors. There were slight changes, but it was mostly a continuation of trends that have been present for weeks: Donald Trump and Jeb Bush rising, pushing the non-establishment candidates out of the spotlight.


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