*Disclaimer: While I have my personal political views, they are not meant to show in this article. This is purely about the concept of betting in this arena*
I think we are all aware of the sports betting business. The United States Supreme Court struck down state bans of sports gambling a few months ago, allowing states to make their own laws to deal with this growing phenomenon.
And sports wagerers can get very creative. In addition to the standard "over/under" total points bets, "who will win outright" bets, or to be putting money in a team's ability to "cover the spread," one can now predict and win money based on what player will score first, how quickly the first scoring play will come, and even whether a football game will be a run or pass play next. Weekly and yearly fantasy football leagues have also grown exponentially in popularity.
In today's era of Trump tweets and 24-hour cable news, a new gaming type is starting to win over the market: political betting. While the United States does not allow domestic casinos to list odds on occurrences in the political world, nothing will stop an American from placing a bet with an offshore book, often in the UK.
Oddschecker.com has a great listing of political odds. The leading books are the same ones where millions also sports gamble, such as Bet365, SkyBet, Betfair, and many others.
If you want to bet on the 2020 election, guess what? It's not too early! President Trump is the statistical favorite to win, with odds of his re-election hovering around 11/8. This means an $8 bet, followed by a Trump win, would result on an $11 net return on investment.
While Democrats and left-wingers, in general, may not like that Trump is favored to win in 2020, they can take heart in the fact that the Democrats are actually favored to be the winning party in the next presidential election, with 4/5 odds, according to UK betting firm Ladbrokes. This means a $5 bet on the Democrats would result in a net return of $4 if a Democrat were to win. The GOP stands at a reciprocal 5/4 while an Independent winning would trigger a 25/1 return.
There are dozens of variables to place a bet on, so the hot takers have plenty of opportunities to get rich. 888 Sport in the European entity of Gibraltar is taking 3/10 bets that Trump *will* finish his first term and sets 11/5 odds that he won't. While there is constant talk of impeachment and indictment of Trump, anyone who is truly confident in such events happening would be taking a very risky-- but a potentially rewarding investment.
Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are the favorites to win the Democratic Party nomination in 2020 with 6/1 odds. Bernie Sanders is close behind at 7/1 according to Betfair. But those who are ambitious can place a 25/1 bet on Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg or even a 100/1 bet on Lady Gaga. Yes. Lady Gaga. I'm not making that up. Betway will gladly take your money.
For those interested in space creatures, Irish-based Paddy Power is offering 20/1 odds that Trump will announce the official existence of alien life, and 33/1 odds that he will open Area 51 to the public.
This just shows that a confident person can bet on virtually any conceivable event. This is great. If someone is confident enough in something, they should be allowed to invest in their predictions. Just watch "The Big Short" and see people get rich. At the same time, the gaming industry is making lots of money off losing bets, and as controversial as this is, it is the free market. People make choices as they like, and the gaming sector of the economy flourishes. Freedom!