America Needs Political Prediction Markets

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Posted: Sep 27, 2022 12:01 AM

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Just in time for the heat of the election season, a federal agency called the Commodity Futures Trading Commission has announced it will no longer allow betting on political and election outcomes.

These online wagering platforms, most notably PredictIt, allow betting on all sorts of political outcomes: the odds that Republicans win the Senate in November, the odds that Joe Biden will be the next Democratic nominee for president (right now 33%) or the odds that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis wins the GOP nomination in 2024 (right now 38%). You can also bet on whether a piece of legislation will pass.

These betting markets don’t always predict the right election outcomes. (Donald Trump was far from a favorite in 2016 when he beat Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.) But they tend to be more accurate than polls or the prognostications of Washington talking heads. Betting markets are often efficient because they price in real time the most accurate polling data, as well as day-to-day

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