Friday, April 27, 2007

Are Political Futures Legit?

According to a Slate Explainer, the prediction market on whether political futures markets are legal appears to be trading in mixed volume.

But at least one Democratic congressman doesn't think there's any doubt in the matter. Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), chairman of the Financial Services Committee, held a press conference yesterday to introduce legislation to repeal the ban on online gambling passed by Congress last year.

"This is about freedom," Frank said. "I'm not just concerned with poker. What's next? Mahjong?"

A Bettor Way To Track Political Futures: Slate Launches Hourly Intrade and IEM Updates

"If a single prediction market is wiser than the pundits and the polls, imagine how wise all the prediction markets are together. That's the idea behind Slate's "Political Futures," which offers a comprehensive guide to all the big political prediction markets.

From now until Election Day 2008, Slate plans to publish hourly updates of the key data from Iowa Electronic Markets,, and (Casualobserver has not yet launched its 2008 political prediction market) Initially, Slate will be tracking four markets: 1) Democratic nominee for president, 2) Republican nominee for president, 3) presidential victor, and 4) party control of the presidency. It will add Senate and House races as they heat up next year.