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James Boyce Headshot

Who Could Have Predicted Hillary As Secretary Of State? Me.

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Immediately before the election, I started a conversation with Chad Rigetti about what would happen with the then presumed winner Barack Obama's cabinet appointments, my interest was partially business, we were launching the Cabinet NewsLadder right after the election, and partially personal, I wanted to see how John Kerry looked in the betting.

When the Secretary of State page went up on November 5th and the bets started to be laid down, what struck me was nothing to do with John Kerry, or Bill Richardson, or Richard Holbrooke, but with the large number, relatively, of initial bets placed on Hillary for Secretary of State. Right from the start, she was the leader. I was struck by this because as the time, no other source had her as the leader for the job.

While the mainstream and independent press has jumped to and from candidates for this critical spot, the prediction market has remained calmly fixated on Hillary; and now there is more money on Hillary than all of the other candidates combined, in fact, right now it would cost you $8.10 per option on Hillary and you get $10 back if she is named to the position.

How certain are the markets on this?

Well, one week before November 4th, Barack Obama would have cost you $8.50 and that in my mind was as sure a thing as you will ever see in politics.

So if Hillary is Secretary Of State, who else joins the cabinet?

Secretary Gates, stays as Secretary of Defense, 79.9.

Attorney General, Eric Holder, 75. Janet Napolitano, 50.

Secretary of Treasury, Tim Geithner, 59.7; Larry Summers 34.5

Here is the link directly to Intrade's site.

Final thought: not only are the prediction markets picking Hillary, of all the potential appointments, she is far and away the most predicted.

Let's see how they do.