Skip to comments.Told You So!
Posted on 11/06/2018 11:17:07 PM PST by Kaslin
Republicans held the Senate! Democrats took the House but by a narrower margin!
Did I just embarrass myself?
I write this Election Day morning, before most polling places even opened. I don't know the actual results, of course.
But I'll pretend I do because I trust the betting odds.
As of Tuesday morning, ElectionBettingOdds.com, a site I co-founded, says Republicans have an 84 percent chance to hold the Senate and Democrats a 71 percent chance to retake the House.
Why trust a bunch of gamblers? Because they have the best track record!
Polls have flaws. Some people lie to pollsters or just give them what they think is the "proper" answer. Others won't even talk to them.
Pundits are worse. They often let their personal preferences skew their predictions.
Bettors are more accurate because of something called the "wisdom of crowds." It turns out that an average of many people's estimates is usually more accurate than any one person's views.
Researchers noticed that while watching the TV series "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire." Stumped contestants could poll the audience or call a friend.
The friends, often experts of some kind, got answers right 65 percent of the time. The studio audience included few experts, but the crowd got the answer right 91 percent of the time.
The crowd that bets on elections online (political betting is legal in Europe and at a small American futures market called PredictIt.com) works hard to get the answers right.
They look at more than polls. They factor in the latest news, try to sense the mood on the ground and research candidates' campaign tactics.
They try harder than pundits because their own money is on the line. You've met blowhards who confidently predict things until someone says, "Want to bet?" Then they shut up. People who put their money where their mouths are become more careful.
Prediction markets, or futures markets, are not new. Stock markets are prediction markets where people bet on companies' future earnings. A hundred years ago, "More money was traded in election markets than in stock markets," says economist Robin Hanson.
Then, unfortunately, governments in America banned most betting. That deprived Americans of one of the best predictors of future events.
There were a few exceptions. Fifteen years ago, U.S. officials asked Hanson to create a betting market that might predict future problems.
"The Department of Defense heard prediction markets were interesting, doing powerful things," says Hanson. "They said, 'Show us it works for stuff we do... (P)redict events in the Middle East.'"
As usual, some elected officials were horrified by the idea of people betting on things like possible terrorism. Sen. Ron Wyden stood up on the Senate floor to declare such betting "ridiculous and grotesque." The next day, the secretary of Defense declared the project dead.
So the Pentagon is deprived of predictions that might save lives. It's too bad, because bettors are just, well, better.
But not perfect. While the betting odds are almost always the best predictors, in the last presidential election they (along with polls and pundits) were wrong about Donald Trump. Bettors gave him only a 20 percent chance.
I shouldn't say "wrong." Twenty percent just means Trump had a 1 in 5 chance. That's not nothing.
The betting markets also got Brexit wrong. They gave it a 25 percent chance.
But in both cases, as election results came in, the betting odds shifted much faster than the TV coverage. It was fun watching anchors try to catch up to what ElectionBettingOdds.com already predicted on my phone.
As I write, the website says this about specific states:
Republicans will narrowly win Arizona (51 percent chance) and Missouri (57), and easily win North Dakota (80), Tennessee (80) and Texas (79).
By the time you read this, say bettors, Democrats will have flipped Nevada (60 percent chance) and held West Virginia (75), Montana (65) and New Jersey (81).
Republicans will win the Georgia governor's race (64 percent chance), but Scott Walker will lose in Wisconsin (59), and Florida now probably has a new far-left governor (64).
Were the bettors right?
I assume some were not. After all, a 60 percent chance of winning means winning only 6 out of 10 times.
Whatever way it turns out, we'll add the results to the "track record" section at ElectionBettingOdds.com.
We'll also keep tracking the 2020 presidential race.
Odds update every five minutes, but Tuesday morning the odds for 2020 were:
Donald Trump: 36.1 percent
Kamala Harris: 10.9 percent
Elizabeth Warren: 5.9 percent
Tulsi Gabbard: 5.7 percent
Bernie Sanders: 4.2 percent
Joe Biden: 4.1 percent
Unfortunately, I don't see many advocates of restrained government on that list.
Gollum wanted to turn Florida into a California!
Oh, please. John Stossel gave Hillary an 80+% chance of winning two years ago, and also gave Brexit the same chance of being defeated. So much for his “accuracy.”
Losing the House was almost predictable. With 40+ Republicans vacating their seats, the GOP had a much tougher campaign than usual to defend their majority.
I think the fact that the House margin is that narrow is a victory in itself, considering how we limited the losses.
And if I read this right, the ones who lost were RINOs—those who didn’t try to sabotage the House by retiring as well.
So in other words, the House is almost exactly the same as before, just with an outright globalist as Speaker instead of a hidden globalist.
A loss is still as loss.
You’ll probably find that most GOP House losses were in districts that Hillary Clinton won in 2016. A RINO was probably the best you’re ever going to get in those places.
What you said.
Is a loss a loss if it was unavoidable?
Check out the results from 2010 and 1994, Obama's and Clinton's first mid-term elections. This is miniscule in comparison.
I think the only first-term President to gain in both the House and Senate was GWB, and that had a lot to do with 9/11.
In football, the purpose of the spread is to prompt half the customers to bet on each side. The bookies look forward to earning their 10% from the losers. Is political gambling industry based on different biz model than the football spread?
Are we ever going to build this flipping wall?
honestly and bluntly..
Trump will have to take the money from the military to get it done.
Thats a risky bet.
There’s no splitting hairs. We lost the House. This means the Democrat scum will start the clap trap about impeachment, even though there is no grounds for it and they’ll undo the tax cuts. Hells bells, when we had the majority they didn’t use it.
How are they going to do that? Read the U.S. Constitution!
Yes, the House can pass a repeal of the tax cuts, and even if the GOP-controlled Senate passed it too, the POTUS still needs to sign that bill into law.
Are you saying the House will vote to repeal the tax cuts, the GOP Senate will pass it too, and then President Trump will sign that bill into law?
If not, then what in the hell are you talking about?!?!
Yes, if most of those GOP Senators stay, we likely hold the House.
True. Parties run house or senate, not individuals
Gillum isnt going anywhere. He will become a media darling like Beto. We havent heard the last of him.
And Florida isnt going to stay purple much longer. The voters in this state just gave felons back their right to vote. Florida goes blue startin 2020.
Not only will they not do that, but they will work with Trump to make middle class cuts permanent. They will pass some infrastructure spending.
We can kiss any chance of controlling spending good bye. (not that there was any) But Trump will get a few things and talk about them on the 2020 campaign trail. Then he will talk about the obstructing, resisting, one term and out, Democrats. The worst case for them is they try to impeach. They might not get the votes because not all Dems are that stupid. But if they do, he will release documents in his defense that will make a very good case to impeach Obama.
He will win in 2020 regardless, but if the Dems are stupid he will win in a landlslide with huge coattails.
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