Independent to Upset Clinton and Trump in Utah

Evan McMullin is leading the polls in Utah.

Evan McMullin is leading the polls in Utah.

The American presidential election is fewer than two weeks away and the most interesting of the 50 states is Utah in which there is an independent candidate polling strongly.

That Hillary Clinton will become the first female president of the United States of America appears almost certain as Donald Trump implodes. It was always likely that negative stories about Trump would make headlines prior to the vote and there are members of the Republican Party base who do not want the Celebrity Apprentice host to win the election.

Either Clinton and Trump is set to take out 49 of the United States of America’s 50 states but the political heavyweights have a fight on their hands in Utah. The Beehive State has a live independent candidate on its ballot paper, a man whom some punters are speculating could even end up succeeding Barack Obama as the holder of the keys to the White House.

Two months ago, Evan McMullin announced that he would run as a candidate for the American presidency on an independent ticket. A Mormon, McMullin is a graduate of Brigham Young University who was aligned to the Republican Party until recently. McMullin has had a diverse career, including time as a Central Intelligence Agency operations officer, a volunteer refugee settlement office for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and an investment banker. McMullin, who views himself as a conservative alternative to Clinton and Trump, has the backing of the Better for America organisation and the support of several anti-Trump donors.

A poll published last week had McMullin in front in the race for Utah’s collegiate votes. McMullin scored 31 per cent in the Emerson College survey, rating ahead of Trump (27%) and Clinton (24%). Even allowing for the margin of error that one associates with a 700-person poll, McMullin merits his Utah win odds of +110  with William Hill. That bookmaker rates McMullin as less likely to win Utah than Trump.

The punters who are backing McMullin at massive odds to be the next American president are basing their bets on the Twelfth Amendment. According to that bit of the American constitution, the House of Representative gets to pick the president from the three candidates with the most electoral college votes if none of them reaches 270, which is the magic number for a majority. The Republican Party dominates the House of Representatives and, in the event of neither Clinton nor Trump getting to 270, there is a theory that those politicians with a vote would opt for McMullin provided that he carries his home state of Utah.

McMullin is trading at odds of +50000  with many bookmakers, including Ladbrokes, Paddy Power and SkyBet, to become the most unlikely of American presidents and, while one can see how he gets to the top job, one cannot see Trump being sufficiently competitive nationwide to prevent Clinton reaching 270 electoral college votes. A smarter play is to back McMullin to win Utah and become the first independent or third-party candidate to win a state since 1968 when George Wallace carried Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana and Mississippi in an American presidential election that Richard Nixon claimed before his fall from grace in 1974.

Tips Summary

Evan McMullin to Win the State of Utah
US Presidential Elections
Odds:  +110