Republican gubernatorial challenger Mark Ronchetti has jumped 20 points in the odds market PredictIt since March, cutting a 47-point deficit down to 9 points against incumbent Democrat Michelle Lujan Grisham.
Grisham maintains a advantage in the race, with shares predicting her victory at 56 cents to Ronchetti’s 47 cents a share.
While the political prediction powerhouses from Sabato’s Crystal Ball, Cook Political Report, and Inside Elections still list the New Mexico governor’s race as “likely” or “leans” Democrat, the drastic change in odds signals that the political tides maybe turning in the race for New Mexico governor.
PredictIt is an online prediction platform that allows users to bet on the outcome of financial and political questions. Prediction markets are historically more accurate than polls. Rather than attempting to measure political outcomes based on surveys with a small segment of the voting populace, prediction markets comprise users betting real money not on the outcome they hope for but the outcome they think is most likely.
More than 25,000 shares have been traded in the Ronchetti-Grisham market since March. It’s not quite the half-million shares traded in the market predicting who will be the GOP nominee for president in 2024 (Ron Desantis leads Donald Trump 42-33), but it’s a significantly larger sample than the polls in the race so far.
Beyond polls, PredictIt analyses take into account factors such as the local economy, historical trends, and national voter sentiment toward the majority party play a role in PredictIt markets–none of which favor Democrats this November.
A post-primary analysis by The Albuquerque Journal this month noted that “the party in control of the White House has lost every governor’s race in New Mexico” since 1990, an ominous trend for an incumbent who rode to victory in a deep blue state on a national anti-Trump wave that flipped the U.S. House of Representatives and delivered 41 seats to Democrats.
Grisham beat Republican Steve Pearce in that race by 14 points, but Brian Sanderoff, “president of Research & Polling Inc. in Albuquerque, said the mood of the nation suggests New Mexico is in for a much more competitive gubernatorial election this year.”
Because of the sorry state of affairs in America, from inflation to gas prices and the impending recession, Republicans are expected to easily take back the House and the Senate in this year’s midterm elections. Estimates range from a 40 to 80-seat swing favoring the GOP.
Joe Biden has the worst approval rating of any president in the last 50 years at this point in his presidency, according to Nate Silver’s 538 polling aggregate, and he has an obedient puppet in Michelle Lujan Grisham, whose own state continues to rank at the bottom nationally in everything from education and poverty to post-COVID economic recovery.
While Grisham’s approval rating towers over the president’s 38.8% (per Real Clear Politics), she recently ranked as the seventh least popular governor in America. A Morning Consult poll from in April and a May poll from SurveyUSA gave her a 48% approval rating among New Mexicans.
On the surface that doesn’t seem half bad, but just two years ago Grisham was riding easy on a 59% approval rating, according to The Albuquerque Journal. That’s an 11-point dive in two years, with no signs of economic ease in the forecast.
Worse, Grisham has nothing to throw at her opponent except his lack of political experience (as a TV weatherman), an attack that may not play well considering the “experienced” politician has nothing in her record that she can brag about except legalizing drugs and increasing government spending by 14%, part of an election-year ploy to throw taxpayer money at a disgruntled populace.
Market predictions, like polls, change daily. But Ronchetti is trending in the same direction as Republicans nationally, and if past gubernatorial elections are any indication of future outcomes, Grisham may be in trouble.
Categories: 2022 Governor's Race