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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

KEEP TRACK OF THE PRESIDENTIAL RACE

Have you heard of INTRADE?  It's been around for a decade now and operates out of the Republic of Ireland.  The founder of the company, John Delaney, a few months ago died 50 meters from the top of Mount Everest and his body could not be recovered.

Like the stock market and sport betting, you can actually invest in your candidate.  For example (click on Refresh--just below to the right--and you can view the latest tally):


8:35:30PM GMT
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Best to Sell
Best to Buy
ContractBQtyBidOfferAQtyLastVolChge
Trade2012.REP.NOM.RYAN
200.30.61140.9111.9k+0.4
Trade2012.PRES.OTHER
5050.60.910001.015.0k+0.1
Trade2012.REP.NOM.OTHER
110.50.65370.677.9k+0.1
Trade2012.REP.NOM.PAUL(RAND)
0-0.128.4k0.126.0k0
Trade2012.REP.NOM.DANIELS
251.72.412.5132.9k+0.6
TradeFLORIDA.ROMNEY
2441.743.025243.523.1k+0.6
Trade2012.REP.NOM.GIULIANI
0-0.125250.1102.7k+0.0
TradeFLORIDA.GINGRICH
2557.057.91757.020.8k+0.4
Trade2012.REP.NOM.CHRISTIE
200.40.81110.8163.2k+0.3
Trade2012.REP.NOM.ROMNEY
863.964.93164.5212.9k+0.5
Trade2012.REP.NOM.GINGRICH
2124.625.4925.4294.0k-0.7
Trade2012.REP.NOM.BUSH
790.91.4211.0132.3k-0.4


It's difficult to understand this table, but, look towards the bottom and you will see that 64.5% of investors predict Mitt Romney winning the Republican nomination, with 25.4% going to Newt Gingrich.  (WHOOPS:  the numbers keep changing because this table automatically refreshes...sorry).  Scanning further up the table, you will see that Gingrich is favored over Romney in Florida, 57% to 43.5%.  Clicking on which party will prevail in the November presidential election, you will  observe that at this time only 42.9% think the Republican candidate will beat Barack Obama on November 6.  

If Ron Paul becomes a serious independent candidate, Obama will almost surely prevail.  If not, then the Super PACS could determine the winner, unless the presidential debates proceed according to New Gingrich's super PAC.

Almost exactly two years ago (23January2010), the Supreme Court prohibited government from placing limits of independent spending for political purposes by corporations and unions.  In short, a political action committee can spend whatever it can get to support a candidate, as long as this group does not connive with that person.  Sure, then why are former staff members almost always chairing these super PACs?  Future ones will be smarter about this.  Read recent columns by conservative Jacob Sullum and liberal Ann McFeatters for details.  

Anyway, at least $6 billion will be spent on the presidential campaign.  These super PACS will dominate.  Why?  'cause Romney will need to use a good part of his funding just to fend off his Republican challengers.  Once he is declared the Republican contender, though, it will be a simple matter of corporations and rich individuals immediately raising billions of dollars to match what Obama and his super PACs have been accumulating.  

Voters are sheep.  They believe what they see on television or read.  Money, as much as the economy, could determine who will be our next president.  For example, many independents (who will determine the winner) have already forgotten that the Republicans ruined the economy, blame Obama for our current condition, and don't realize that he never had an economic policy but had to react to a looming depression.

Barack Obama tonight gave his first 2012 presidential campaign speech.  It was also his 2012 State of the Union address:


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The Dow Jones Industrials slipped 33 to 12,675, with the European market also down, but up in the Orient.  Gold dropped $9/toz to $1667, while the WTI is at $99/barrel and Brent at $110/barrel.

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