Georgia Senate Races Odds Tracker: Warnock Up; Ossoff-Perdue Tight
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Democrat Raphael Warnock remains a solid favorite to defeat Republican incumbent Kelly Loeffler in one of two US Senate runoffs today in Georgia, according to British bookmaker Ladbrokes.
Warnock remained at -200 to Loeffler’s +150 on Tuesday morning. The odds were unchanged from Monday but are a dramatic turnaround from where the race stood a week ago, when Loeffler was the favorite.
In the other Senate runoff, Democrat Jon Ossoff and Republican incumbent David Perdue were both -110 Tuesday morning as voters headed to the polls. For a brief time on Monday, Ossoff was the favorite at -133. Warnock was installed as the favorite in his race on Saturday at -137 and was -167 late Sunday. The disparity in odds between the two races is a bit surprising, given that the Democrats have campaigned largely as a team and few expect a lot of split-ticket voting.
The odds have been shifting since the middle of last week after a series of polls showed both Democrats leading. However, what might have spurred the movement late Sunday and overnight was the recording from a Saturday call between President Donald Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger that was leaked to the Washington Post on Sunday.
On Monday, Georgia’s top election official offered a takedown on claims of election fraud by Trump and his allies. Several hours later, at what was billed as a rally for Loeffler and Perdue featuring Trump, the President continued to repeat the same refuted claims that the election was stolen from him in the state.
The Republicans' odds to hold the Senate (win either of the Georgia races) remained at -137 on Tuesday, their lowest to date. Last Thursday, those odds were -250. The GOP is +110 to have exactly 50 seats, which would mean losing both runoffs. Ladbrokes has the odds of a Republican sweep at +175.
Many Polls Now Favoring Democrats in Georgia
In a poll released Wednesday morning by JMC Analytics & Polling, Ossoff led Perdue 50% to 43% and Warnock led Loeffler 53% to 44%. More than 90% of respondents had already voted, skewing the numbers some but also indicating the Democrats may be building up a lead in mail-in and early voting ahead of Tuesday.
Those polling numbers came on the heels of polling from the conservative-leaning Trafalgar Group on Tuesday that showed both Democrats leading and at 50%. A third poll late in the week seemed to confirm the shifting nature of the races.
The odds continue to shift toward the Democrats after Republicans in the Senate blocked a straight up-or-down vote on increasing the stimulus checks from $600 to $2000, which the Democratic House already had done.
The total number of early voters and mail-in ballots received crossed the 3 million mark, far exceeding the total for the 2008 Georgia US Senate runoff. Nearly 100,000 early voters did not vote in the general election and about 31% of early voters are Black, two numbers that have buoyed Democrats’ hopes.
Latest Georgia Senate Race Odds
|Raphael Warnock (D)||-200|
|Kelly Loeffler (R)||+150|
Odds updated January 5
A runoff in the Loeffler race was expected as the November election featured multiple candidates from each party, making it a tall order for one candidate to win. Warnock took the highest percentage of the votes with 33%, while Loeffler had the second most with 26%, well ahead of Doug Collins, a firebrand and favorite of Donald Trump. The total vote breakdown between Democratic and Republican candidates was close. Polls before the Nov. 3 election showed Warnock slightly ahead of Loeffler in a potential runoff, and those afterward show a close race as well.
|Jon Ossoff (D)||-110|
|David Perdue (R)||-110|
Odds updated January 5
The odds on Nov. 3 were +100 for Ossoff and -138 for Perdue. It took until two days before Tuesday's runoff for the odds to return there. Perdue had been a stronger favorite than Loeffler throughout, a concession by the bookmaker to how close he came to winning the first time around, falling a few ticks shy of securing the 50% + 1 needed (he had 49.7% of the vote). They've tightened considerably during this cycle, though.
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How Did Oddsmakers Do On Other Senate Races?
In 2020 U.S. Senate races, the favorite was 11-2. To recap:
Alabama: Republican Tommy Tuberville was the big favorite to unseat Doug Jones at -1000 and he won handily.
Alaska: Republican Dan Sullivan was a -500 favorite. The race wasn't called until more than a week after Election Day as a large segment of the vote couldn't be counted until Nov. 10. He led Al Gross in early returns by a big margin, and Gross was unable to make up ground.
Arizona: Democrat Mark Kelly was a -500 favorite to unseat Martha McSally and he did in a fairly tight race.
Colorado: John Hickenlooper was the biggest Democratic favorite on the board at -1000 and he delivered a decisive win over incumbent Republican Cory Gardner.
Iowa: Late polling flipped incumbent Republican Joni Ernst to favorite status and that polling was spot-on. She won over challenger Theresa Greenfield.
Kansas: Republican Roger Marshall, a -450 favorite, rolled over Barbara Bollier on Election Day.
Kentucky: Republican Mitch McConnell, a -1600 favorite, was never truly challenged by Democrat Amy McGrath despite early polling and optimism from her side.
Maine: Far and away the biggest miss by bookmakers, who underestimated Republican Susan Collins, making her a +225 underdog to Sara Gideon, who was -300. Gideon led in virtually every poll, often by a big number, and Biden easily carried the state. However, Mainers returned Collins to the Senate as the state saw a large number of split ticket votes.
Michigan: Democrat Gary Peters was a -300 favorite to win his seat and he held on in a tough race over John James.
Montana: Once thought a great opportunity for a Democratic pickup, Montana fizzled. Oddsmakers flipped Republican Steve Daines to favorite status during the summer and were right. He entered Election Day -200 and won.
North Carolina: Another significant miss for the oddsmakers. Democrat Cal Cunningham was a favorite throughout the cycle and led incumbent Republican Thom Tillis in most polls (though they were tight).
South Carolina: Oddsmakers never seemed overly swayed by polling showing this as a tight race between incumbent Republican Lindsey Graham and challenger Jaime Harrison, and Graham was a -300 favorite on Election Day. He won easily.
Texas: Bookmakers never bought into a blue wave in Texas taking down incumbent John Cornyn, and the -600 favorite rolled to victory over challenger MJ Hegar.