The 2024 presidential race is just getting started with former President Donald Trump’s announcement last November that he would run again, while there are rumors President Joe Biden will declare his candidacy soon.
Although conventional wisdom would pick one of these two to ultimately win the election, the betting markets are placing their money on someone else.
Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is the bookies favorite to win the 2024 election. DeSantis was just sworn-in for his second term as governor after beating his Democratic opponent by nearly 20 points.
DeSantis has captured national attention by confronting culture issues head-on and insisting on less intrusive COVID-19 mandates. The GOP governor signed legislation last year prohibiting discussion about sexual orientation or gender identity to elementary school children in kindergarten through third grade.
As of Jan. 5, 2023, one betting line gives DeSantis a 36.4% chance to win the presidency at this point, followed with 26.7% for Biden and 12.5% for Trump. A number of other potential candidates have single digit odds of winning the race, including Vice President Kamala Harris, California Gov. Gavin Newsom, former U.N. Ambassador and governor of South Carolina Nikki Haley.
Although most state laws prohibit betting on elections, betting lines around the world opened once the 2020 race had concluded. DeSantis hasn’t always been the favorite. Trump was a slight favorite to win for much of last year, but that switched in November when DeSantis pulled ahead.
Biden also overtook Trump on the betting line a month later but is well behind DeSantis. If the betting line is to be believed, the former president has a lot of ground to make up if his campaign expects to be competitive.
After Trump pulled off a surprising upset in 2016, anyone now, including celebrities, are part of the conversation. Some long shot potential candidates on the betting line include Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Fox News anchor Tucker Carlson, rapper Kanye West, podcaster Joe Rogan, and billionaires Bill Gates and Elon Musk.
European oddsmakers, Ladbrokes, explain that Trump will become the favorite to win a close 2024 race if he can get past DeSantis. The betting line considers Trump “a polarizer,” while DeSantis’ appeal to working class and Hispanic voters makes him the candidate to beat.
DeSantis hasn’t said much about a potential 2024 run, although he raised more than $200 million in fundraising for his reelection. He still has $90 million after the election, a considerable amount that could help jumpstart a presidential campaign.
Traditionally candidates don’t officially jump into the presidential contest until closer to the first primary elections. The first presidential primaries are still a year away.