The polls are now open across the continental U.S., which means you can no longer wager a bet on the 2012 U.S. Presidential Election at most online or international sportsbooks. Sure, betting on an election is illegal in the U.S. (looking at you, Scarborough), but British and Caribbean gambling houses would have happily taken your bet right up until the wee hours this morning.
Bettors’ odds on this election have been varying everyday for weeks – just like the tracking polls – but until we start getting election results tonight, these final bookmakers’ election odds may be the most reliable indicator of how America will vote today. After all, we are talking about very successful bookies here.
The winnings are paid upon learning the election winner – not on TV network projections . So if Ohio screws up those provisional ballots, winning bettors might not see their earnings until around Christmas.
At the Antigua-based gambling site Bovada.com, President Obama is a 4-1 favorite to win re-election. The President is listed as a -400 favorite, meaning you’d have to bet $400 on him to win $100. British betting house Ladbroke’s has the President as an even bigger 5-1 favorite. Bovada has the President as a slight underdog for the popular vote, though, with -140 odds that Obama won’t manage to win 50.5% of the popular vote.
At final bet time, Republican challenger Mitt Romney was listed as a +310 underdog at Ladbroke’s -- meaning, one would win $310 for every $100 bet on Romney. Bovada.com is slightly more charitable to Governor Romney's chances, listing him as only a +300 underdog.
You want swing state odds? Bovada makes Romney a 2-1 favorite in Florida, but gives Obama a 3.5-1 edge in Ohio. They’re calling Colorado the tightest swing state (with Obama a very slight favorite), and Nevada the biggest blowout swing state (with Obama a 10-1 favorite). And bookies know a few things about Nevada.
No sportbooks are giving odds in the match-up of the poll-watchers against the people watching the poll-watchers. That is some action of which I would definitely want a piece.
Of course I just want everyone to do their patriotic duty by going out and voting today. I would never encourage anyone to wager on a civic election. Especially a night when they’re giving Denver nine-and-a-half against the Pistons.
Bookies weigh in with 2012 Election betting odds