The markets speak

I read so much blogospheric debate on the future of the Republican Party.  As for the 2012 Republican nominee, at Intrade.com, Romney is still leading the pack in the 31 range, and Palin remains in the 17-18 range.  John Thune is very much underdiscussed, given that his chance of winning the nomination seems to be about as large as Palin's. 

As Robin Hanson would say, politics isn't about policy.  Of course if you think these numbers are wrong, go and improve them.

Comments

Does anyone know if it is legal for a U.S. resident to bet on Intrade?

That depends on how bad the Democrats get. Evangelicals are suckers.

Moderates are suckers too, and I suspect the fact that Romney is NOT evangelical had them at hello.

"As Robin Hanson would say, politics isn't about policy. Of course if you think these numbers are wrong, go and improve them."

I think the numbers are wrong but have neither the interest or energy to want to improve them. Not sure why I read this blog anymore - this entry certainly has very little to say.

Interesting that you all think the flavor of the
politician matters...

My bet for the suckers question goes to people who think which
hogs are at the trough matters.

Better to have a barbecue instead.

Will: see https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Intrade#Legal_status

It's in a grey area now. In practice, any number of Americans use it without problem.

Also, looks like there's enough volume to profit off the Palin one, although I wouldn't want to hold onto shares for too long.

Thune's performance is the first piece of evidence that I've ever seen that "prediction markets" may incorporate some wisdom other than as "conventional wisdom markets".

Thune is sitting on a pile of cash, after running unopposed, in the state next door to Iowa. He's conservative, smart, and attractive -- essentially Romney with a trustworthy commitment to principles and potential popular appeal.

If Thune stops Huckabee from winning Iowa again, then Huckabee will drop out. Then New Hampshire will rally around Thune as the anti-Palin. Romney will then drop out. If Thune wins IA and NH, the party is likely to rally around him as a formidable alternative to Obama.

The main problem he has right now is lack of name recognition. But, then again, Clinton had little of that in 1992 either.

If unemployment stays at 9-10% by late Summer of next year, look for Hillary Clinton to find some "honorable" excuse to resign as Secretary of State and run for the Democrat nomination.

Jim and Yancey -- quite confident, there! Seems like you can make some easy money from InTrade, so I suggest you hop to it!

If he didn't have a trademark problem, Jeb Bush, running as a moderate southern Republican, could have a shot. maybe a governor who has to get things done, like the gov of Indiana, would have a chance as well.

The Republicans of any fame have all been effectively painted as extremists or living jokes. Every one of the prominent pols mentioned in the entry and in the comments would get creamed in a general election. It is going to have to be an unknown for the Republicans in 2012 to avoid another electoral TKO.

Tomasz --

It is true that Obama's approval rating has been decimated by his handling of the economy, and that the economy is very likely to improve over the next two years -- it can hardly get much worse. But it is equally true that Republicans will claim (at least) half of the credit for that after they take the House in two months. So if you're counting on a big bounce-back on Obama Approval, you are likely to be disappointed.

However, I'd worry much more about Obama's general attitude toward the Presidency. He seems very annoyed by the job, and I have no doubt that he will lose no sleep whatsoever if he is a one-termer. His main joy in life is giving speeched to cheering crowds; he can do plenty of that on the lecture circuit while writing more books about himself, without having to bother with the tedious hassles of, you know, governing.

He knows that his legacy was already secure even before he was sworn in. He lives for campaigning, so he'll do a lot of that in 2012, in front of his fans. But I suspect that 30 more years of speeches, book royalties, pensions, Secret Service protection and glowing NYT editorials doesn't strike him as unpleasant. Win or lose for him, it's all good.

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