Donald Trump

The Next President

Michelle Obama has better odds of being the next president than Hillary Clinton.

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Will Donald Trump be re-elected in 2020?

Probably not, say people who bet. They give Trump only a 23 percent chance. They do pick him over all other politicians, but the favorite is "other."

I know this because I follow the betting odds at ElectionBettingOdds.com.

Yes, bettors were wrong about Trump's election and Brexit, but those were exceptions, and those votes unusual. Even Brexit's promoters predicted a loss; even Trump said he thought he'd lose when he saw the election-night exit polls.

But betting odds are usually right. It's easy to fall into the trap of thinking that if the bettors gave a candidate, say, a 65 percent chance to win, and he lost, bettors were "wrong." But remember, 65 percent means bettors also thought there was a 35 percent chance that candidate would lose.

There's wisdom in crowds, if the crowds put their money where their mouths are.

Bettors accurately picked Oscar winners, "American Idol" winners and most important elections. ElectionBettingOdds.com named VP picks Mike Pence and Tim Kaine a week before they were picked.

Even when bettors bet wrong, they are quicker to adjust than others. By 10 p.m. on election night, the odds had flipped from Clinton to Trump. An hour later, bettors had Trump at 90 percent, but CNN's Wolf Blitzer was still saying, "Hilary Clinton is now ahead in the all-important electoral college map count!"

Last week, right before France's election, reporters claimed that the terrorism in France would help elect Marine Le Pen. Saturday, Fox News headlined: "Le Pen sees Trump-like boost."

But bettors knew better. They favored Emmanuel Macron, 60 percent to 20 percent, and sure enough, he was the first-round winner.

The New York Times hyped Jean-Luc Melenchon, France's socialist candidate (of course), claiming he was "gaining steam." But betters weren't fooled. They gave Melenchon just a 5 percent chance.

A more complete track record of the bettors' predictions is posted at ElectionBettingOdds.com.

I should explain: ElectionBettingOdds.com is a website my TV producer and I created. He takes the odds from legal betting markets, mostly from the biggest and most reliable one, Betfair (based in the U.K.). Our site converts Betfair's complex formulae to percentages that are easy to understand.

Candidates' shares trade like stocks in the stock market. Since, as I write, bettors give President Trump only a 23 percent chance of winning in 2020, you Trump supporters can make a big profit if he wins. Buy 100 shares of Trump now (at 23 cents a share) and if he wins, you'll get $100 for every $23 you bet.

Actually, you Americans can't make that bet, because restrictive U.S. anti-gambling regulations prevent Betfair from dealing with Americans.

One American website, PredictIt.com, did get a special exemption from regulators that allows it to take limited bets from Americans, but they don't yet offer 2020 odds on individual candidates.

They do offer other interesting bets, however:

Think basic provisions of Obamacare will be repealed this year? Bettors give it only a one-third chance.

Tax reform fares better: There's a 50 percent chance individual income taxes will be cut.

Finally, who do Betfair's bettors predict will be Trump's competition in 2020? Mike Pence, Elizabeth Warren and, oddly, Michelle Obama.

None comes close to Trump in the odds. Pence is in second place, with just a 9 percent chance. Pence probably leads other Republicans because many bettors don't think Trump will complete one term. If Trump quits, Pence would have the incumbent's advantage. Paul Ryan and Ted Cruz are the next Republicans, but both are below 3 percent.
I am surprised Hillary Clinton does so poorly. Elizabeth Warren leads all Democrats with 8 percent. In fact, bettors give Joe Biden, Senator Bernie Sanders and even Michelle Obama (5 percent) better shots than Clinton (3 percent).

Of course, it's early. We should be skeptical of predictions of events four years in advance. But when I want the most accurate possible clues about the future, I turn to ElectionBettingOdds.com.

Those odds aren't perfect, but they're better than pundits, polls and other alternatives.

We'd have more valuable predictions if nervous U.S. lawmakers would just legalize political prediction markets. Unfortunately, they've been too close-minded to do that.

COPYRIGHT 2017 BY JFS PRODUCTIONS INC.

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  1. Say what you will about the wookie, but at least she cares about children’s well-being (in her own way). Cankles just cares about how to best harvest their blood and organs to keep Herself “alive” inside the vat she occupies in between public appearances/feedings

    1. in her own way

      Her way or the highway? No thanks.

    2. M Obama is a complete mental retard like her husband.

      Please look up her senior thesis at Harvard. It is race victim nonsense. She is the same pimp that her husband is.

      And I can see her running for president and winning for sure.

      We all know that is the bulletproof ascension to the government piggy bank. Black woman democrat.

      The only person that could beat her is a black baby girl democrat that is pondering a sex change.

      1. Michelle is a turnip.

      2. White males have such a hard time becoming president. =(

        1. Doesn’t have to be a white male Phony….could you proggie dimwits at least run somebody appealing enough not to lose to the Tangerine Tornado?

          Hint…..Michelle Obama ain’t it.

        2. Yeah it horrible what marginalized souls Hillary and Barack are next to me. My white maleness confers so much more power than does their..,. actual power. It’s a shame I do t have to go be them more special treatment to make up the power differential between us.

          1. *give them more special treatment.

        3. But isn’t Trump a person of color? Orange is the new white?

  2. I often wondered about how Bill felt about Hillary running. On the one hand, a win would put all those interns back within reach, and he’d be more immune from lawsuits than outside the White House. On the other hand, her ego would make her even more insufferable, and she’d find all sorts of useless committees for him to waste time on.

    1. No more interns for Bill. His First Gentleman crusade would be against the rape culture. He would visit universities to personally research the subject.

  3. Jesus, why do people think the wives who lack their husbands’ political abilities are going to be President?

    Michelle is not a very likeable person. You can say “Look at the POLLS of her support” and all, but Hillary had similar levels of support (having a media that is dedicated to pimping you up — she was in the Maxim Hot 100 one year, for God’s sake, despite having a passing resemblance to Chewbacca — helps).

    Michelle is not “smoothe”. She’s not amusing. She is lecturing school marm.

    She’d get routed, as well. Her history is ripe to explore. Such as why a hospital created a high-pay job for her when her hubby became a Senator, then closed it and never hired anybody else for it when she left when he won the WH.

  4. John, I think the betting game for politics is just not very accurate. I think that it might be that just because people bet on political races does not mean that they bet much, so smaller bets are easier to lose. I think the second thing is that people are actually betting based on factors that tens of millions of voters will not choose.

    Trump won and he was not favored in 2016. Trump will win in 2020 at the current pace of him one campaign promise here and there. The people voting for Trump can clearly see the obstacles (RINOs in Congress and Democrats) to fulfilling his goals. Trump will get credit for getting Gorsuch on the SCOTUS, lowering taxes, cutting some of the federal budget, building a wall along Mexico border, etc.

    I am starting to hear the comments from non-Trump voters “He’s not doing too bad”.

    1. He’s not doing that good, either.

    2. Trump will get credit for getting Gorsuch on the SCOTUS, lowering taxes, cutting some of the federal budget, building a wall along Mexico border, etc.

      Of those accomplishments, only getting Gorsuch on SCOTUS has actually come to pass so far (key words).

      I think it’s a long shot to say the least that his budget proposal actually gets passed with all of his proposed cuts in place, and his border wall is a long shot to get built as well. Something might get built, a few more miles of shitty fencing perhaps, but I doubt it’s gonna be his promised “Great Wall of Trump” or anything like he described while running for office. Tax reform might have slightly better odds. Republicans do love them some tax cuts carve outs for their pet social engineering causes via tax code. But I wouldn’t bet on an honest to God lowering of the nominal rates or simplification of the tax code, that’s crazy talk to pols.

  5. John, I think the betting game for politics is just not very accurate.

    Doesn’t the history of it contradict that? I’m not terribly knowledgeable about it, but from what I’ve read they usually seem to get it right. I suppose maybe most elections are just easy to predict the outcome of.

    I am starting to hear the comments from non-Trump voters “He’s not doing too bad”.

    He would have to try pretty hard to be as bad as a lot of people thought he would be.

    1. He would have to try pretty hard to be as bad as a lot of people thought he would be.

      Yeah, “he’s not doing too bad” just means “I guess he isn’t the second coming of Hitler after all.”

    2. They do, but only when you take stuff like this into account–

      Even when bettors bet wrong, they are quicker to adjust than others. By 10 p.m. on election night, the odds had flipped from Clinton to Trump.

      It’s easy to be ‘right’ when it’s become obvious.

      An hour later, bettors had Trump at 90 percent, but CNN’s Wolf Blitzer was still saying, “Hilary Clinton is now ahead in the all-important electoral college map count!”

      Bettors were right! Yes, because reality walked them to it. The bet wrong right up until the last second. That’s a really generous definition of ‘right’.

      And there was no ‘still’ with Blitzer. He only got to say that once. Which was one of the weirdest things about the night.

      1. I loved it when he kept going back and forth on the digital map as if he could magically get Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin to flip. That last hour of coverage when the desperation was evident in how he kept working that map was priceless!

    3. I wrote this to my sister-in-law before the election–she was quite angry that I was even considering a Trump vote instead of Johnson…

      Hillary is almost certainly going to win. She’s already said she would revamp SCOTUS to get her agenda, which includes gutting 2nd. She’s already proven that laws do not apply to her. She’s already undermined the FBI and Justice and State departments. She’s already taken millions of dollars of bribes from Russia and sold them uranium. She’s already said SCOTUS was wrong on other progressive dreams too and wants to change those (gutting the 1st).

      The choice now is between Hillary–and I think we agree that she would be at *best* a continuation of Obama and at worst the evil queen of all mythology–and anyone else who is not Hillary. Of the anyone-who-is-not-Hillary, there is only one person–a person who is also deeply flawed as you rightly point out–with even a chance to put her down.

      Since I’m having to chose between two people (Johnson and Trump) with whom I disagree on major major issues (and to me SCOTUS and illegal immigration makes me almost a single-issue, well two-issue, voter), at least I can try to defeat Hillary. Or I stay home and let whatever happens happen. As I said, deeply conflicted.

      I truly believe that a Hillary term would 100% be the worst possible situation. And that a Trump term would 85% chance to be just very bad.

      Tough choices.

  6. Here are the betting odds for which team will win the Superbowl in 2018.

    The favored team is the Patriots. They pay 4-1.

    The next favored team is the Dallas Cowboys. They pay 11-1.

    https://tinyurl.com/lshgav4

    Because no one has more than a 50% chance of winning doesn’t mean that Trump isn’t favored to win.

    Trump certainly has a better chance of winning the nomination than either the Patriots or the Cowboys do of going to the Superbowl.

    1. Trump certainly has a better chance of winning the nomination than either the Patriots or the Cowboys do of going to the Superbowl.

      Especially since in all likelihood he won’t be facing a primary opponent for the nomination. it’s easy to win when you’re the only team playing.

  7. ARE YOU READY FOR CLOONEY, WARREN, MICHELLE AND JENNER IT?!

    What was Popovich saying again about ‘we are Rome’ again?

  8. Michelle Obama has better odds of being the next president than Hillary Clinton.

    And even less relevant experience.

    1. Probably a good thing. 0 is larger than -20.

  9. Reads more like advertising his website than anything else.

  10. Have I mentioned I like Stossel…

    …recently?

  11. I sometimes wonder whether woke prog pol couples like the Obamas and OMG the Deblasios turn to each other at the end of the day, laugh, and exclaim “are these rubes still buying our BS?”

    1. Nope. They believe to the core. That’s why they’re scary.

  12. When Chief Justice Roberts upholds President Sanders’s Universal Care Act by declaring that providers are by default federal employees and can be compelled to provide service at government rates, I’m moving to Serbia.

  13. Ivanka 2024!!

  14. My guess =

    The next DNC flagship candidate is going to be someone from outside the political mainstream, maybe business or media.

    If not, it will be some young, brownish empty-suit a la Kamala Harris, Corey Booker, etc. Probably a mix of the former and latter to see what sticks.

    Forget warren, clinton, sanders. Zero “new car smell”. They’re not inspiring, they’re depressing.

    I don’t even take mentions of “michelle obama” seriously. I think its fine for Stossel to use her as the butt of a joke, but other than that, don’t waste your time w/ her.

    1. Here’s a Scary thought: President Franken.

  15. trump will be re-elected.

    president lepen will attend his second inaugural

  16. RE: The Next President
    Michelle Obama has better odds of being the next president than Hillary Clinton.

    If either Trump the Grump or Heil Hitlary (Hillary or Hillary II [Chelsea]) run for president, then I will place a write in vote for Johnny Fuckerfaster.
    He knows what he’s doing, he does it as fast as he can, and even his mother is astonished by his accomplishments.

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