US Election 2020: when is it, when will we know the result, what are the odds?

US Election 2020: when is it, when will we know the result, what are the odds?

Oddschecker provide you with all the key details of the 2020 Presidential Election, which will decide the fate of the United States for the next four years.

  • Biden is the odds-on favourite to become the next President Of The United States
  • The predicted vital swing states are Pennsylvania, Georgia and Florida

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When is the US Election

Despite rumours the president may try and cancel or postpone the election the constitution restricts his powers meaning it’s up to congress. 

The United States Presidential Elections are always held on the Tuesday after the first Monday of November, this year falling in the third. 

Early voting is permitted in most states allowing voters to cast their vote prior to November 3rd. President Trump has already cast his vote in his home state of Florida, but some people can vote by postal ballot. 

When will we know the result?

It’s hard to say this year; more often than not the Election result is announced the same night or the early morning of the next day.

In 2016 it was announced around 7 am UK time after Trump won Wisconsin which gave him the 270 Electoral College votes needed.

Mail-in ballots are permitted and in 2016. 25% of all ballots were cast by mail and this year already 21% have been cast and is expected to rise with the greater expected turnout of another polarising Election year.

Mail-in ballots are most commonly used by those living abroad, military personnel, the elderly and the ill. With many people choosing to stay home to shield from Covid, postal ballots are expected to rise.

Some have expressed concerns that with an increase in mail-in ballots and budgets being cut to the US postal service, the Election result could be later than expected.

Because of this, it is possible that we could find out the result up to a week after the election with states still accepting and counting postal ballots up to November 13th, however, this is incredibly unlikely.

Exit Polls would usually give us the best indication of a result early on in the voting, however. They’ve been wrong plenty of times in the past and given the expected increase in postal ballots as well as their small sample size it may be hard to expect much validity this year.

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The Swing States

In 2016 there have been thirteen states where Republicans and Democrats fight it out the most, those states are

  • Wisconsin
  • Pennsylvania
  • New Hampshire
  • Minnesota
  • Arizona
  • Georgia
  • Virginia
  • Florida
  • Michigan
  • Nevada
  • Colorado
  • North Carolina
  • Maine

However, this year it’s expected that Georgia, Pennsylvania and Florida will be vital. Many oddschecker punters are backing the Democrats to win Texas; this could be with the recent influx of Californians moving in.

You can find out more about 2020’s swing states in our election piece here.

What does it take to win the US Election?

270 Electoral College votes is the short answer, but this doesn’t exactly mean the candidate with the most votes. Each state has a number of Electors based on the state’s population who will then vote for the presidential candidate, who the people voted in most cases.

Aside from that, the candidate must be:

  • At least 35 years old
  • A natural-born citizen
  • And Lived in the United States for at least 14 years


US Election Odds

The Bookies have their pick this Election year, and it’s clearly Joe Biden. At a best price of 8/15, he’s been the front-runner for a long time now.

But, punters are on the search for value and seem to be predicting another upset in the manner of 2016, with a whopping 58% of bets backing the current President to win a second term.

With the election on the 3rd and the result expected to be delayed one bookie is offering odds on when the result will be announced: November the 9th or later is the market favourite at 7/5 and has picked up 56% of bets.

Back in 2016, Donald Trump won just 46.1% of the popular vote; the market favourite is for him to replicate the same result and pick up 40-45% of the popular vote at 11/8.

The turnout in 2016 was just 55.7%. Many expect the turnout to be greater with how polarising this Election year is. One bookie has offered odds-on this year’s official turnout and over 60% of punters have backed the turnout to be over 60%.

Hilary Clinton lacked the 43 Electoral College votes needed to become the President in 2016. Clearly Punters believe Biden is more popular with American voters with the majority, 16%, of betters backing him to win the huge majority of 330-359 Electoral College votes.

Republicans held on to the Senate in 2016 despite losing two seats; 53% of punters have backed the Republicans to lose three or more seats to be left with fewer than 50 seats at 8/11.

If the Republicans lose another two seats they’ll be left with exactly 50 seats at 6/1, or to maintain their majority with over 50 seats at 2/1.

Despite currently holding the House of Representatives since 2018, the Democrats lost in 2016. Bookies believe the Democrats will win again this year at a best price of 2/11. However, punters are split with 49% backing republicans to win back the House at 9/2.