Biden's Prediction: Inside Information or Pure Bluster?

Vice President Joe Biden, quoted in the Times a few days ago:

“The day after the election, there will be a Democratic majority in the House and a Democratic majority in the Senate. If it weren’t illegal, I’d make book on it.”

A cynic might say it’s easy to offer a bet that can’t be taken, and that Biden’s bluster is nothing but bluster.

Or maybe he knows something that no one else knows?

At Dublin-based InTrade, meanwhile, where it is legal to bet on politics, Biden could make a boatload if he’s right. Here’s the current trading contract for a new GOP majority in the House:

Price for 2010 US House of Representatives Control at

A GOP Senate takeover, meanwhile, doesn’t appear likely:

Price for 2010 US Senate Control at


Actually, that's a very safe bet for Biden to make. Regardless of what happens in the election, the new Congress won't take office until January 2011. So of course on the day after the election there will be a Democratic majority in the House and a Democratic majority in the Senate.


Well, technically, the day after the election all the same people will be in office. The new Congressmen won't be sworn in until January...

Andrew D. Smith

I like that he's willing to bet (or says he is). We'd get a lot fewer absurd predictions if all media outlets refused to print/air any words from prognosticators who did not risk large portions of their income and wealth on their predictions.

Eileen M. Wyatt

Both parties have little charts of what seats are certain for each party, which are seriously disputed, and how the disputes are leaning, so Biden would certainly have access to a reasoned prediction of the results.


He could make much more this morning than he could have made when he said that a few days ago. The Dems' chances of holding the House just dropped to 25.5% on Intrade, the lowest level ever! If you're interested, I keep track of political prediction markets and pundit predictions at -

paul loatman

The betting odds quoted in Ireland on Republicans taking over control of the House recall the Jacksonian Era election phenomenon when both parties deliberately tried to outbet each other in order to sway the public's perception of each party's chances in the oncoming election by creating a "badwagon"effect." Beyond revealing the current odds in this post, it would be more useful for readers to know the source of the bets and who is influencing the odds. Obviously, by posting this information, you [deliberately or not] have already influenced the election. Can you please quote the odds that political operatives are deliberately tipping the scales? I'll make "book" on that.