17. At the end of 2023, will prediction markets say Donald Trump is the most likely Republican nominee for President in 2024?
798
2.1K
Dec 31
97%
chance

We will use Polymarket to resolve these questions looking at 00:01 Jan 1st 2024. If Polymarket stops existing or by our judgment is no longer credible, we will use whichever Manifold market on the question has the most traders. If neither Polymarket nor Manifold exist and are credible, we will use our judgment to select an alternative source.

This is question #17 in the Astral Codex Ten 2023 Prediction Contest. The contest rules and full list of questions are available here. Market will resolve according to Scott Alexander’s judgment, as given through future posts on Astral Codex Ten.

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MilfordHammerschmidt avatar
M.H.

God I wish I had known about this fucking market earlier. This was a steal at 70%

justifieduseofFallibilism avatar
Timothy Curriepredicts YES

@MilfordHammerschmidt

I wish I had bought more 😭

MP avatar
MPpredicts YES

Comm'on guys, it's over. The mugshot is too charismatic. You gotta admit the man still has it.

ForrestTaylor avatar
Forrest Taylorbought Ṁ60 of YES

@MP it's less that the man still has it- he's still the 2020 Trump rather than the 2016 trump- and more like nobody else has what the base now wants.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@MP Charismatic?!? He looks fucking terrified!! LMAO!!!

MP avatar
MPpredicts YES

https://www.politico.com/news/2023/07/29/a-desantis-comeback-would-be-history-breaking-00108820

Even in the early days of the primary system, when things were far more volatile, no candidate has ever blown a national polling lead even a third as large as Trump’s is today: 37 percentage points, according to FiveThirtyEight’s latest average.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@MP Well no primary candidate has been stuck in multiple courtrooms during the campaign before either. Also, if he is removed from the ballot in Blue states during the primary, which is not unthinkable, he won't be able to get the delegates he needs to win the nomination.

MP avatar
MPpredicts YES

@BTE why would he be removed from ballot in Blue states? Who would do that?

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@MP Secretary of State can do it unilaterally under Section 3 of the 14th amendment

MartinRandall avatar
Martin Randallpredicts YES

@BTE Democrats have been foolishly trying to boost Trump's chances, because they'd rather play chicken with the electorate than win on the merits.

MP avatar
MPpredicts YES

@BTE Do secretaries of state run party primaries elections?

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@MartinRandall Of course. They run all elections. When you get signatures to be on the ballot in the primary you turn them into the Secretary of State.

MP avatar
MPpredicts YES

@BTE Gotcha, my bad.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@MP I didn't mean to be dismissive. It is a good question because it isn't intuitive that the primaries are even connected to the government since they are dominated by the political parties. It is silly but each state has such wildly different rules for the primaries too. Like in some states, most I believe, you have to register as a member of a party to vote in that party's primary, but other states (like Illinois where I am from) primaries are open and you can request either party's ballot when you show up as long as you are a registered voter. And then some states have caucuses and those are a total shit show and don't really involve ballots at all.

DylanSlagh avatar
Dylan Slaghpredicts YES

@MartinRandall Made this free-response market!

MP avatar
MPpredicts YES

@BTE don't worry, didn't feel attacked. You explained quite clearly

MP avatar
MPpredicts YES

Currently Polymarket has 54c in Trump attending the first GOP debate. I think one would say that for the odds to flip, a good debate performance would be good. But will the electorate actually think it's actually counts if Trump isn't doesn't attend?

PlasmaBallin avatar
Plasma Ballin'predicts YES

@MP Yeah, it seems like Trump's best strategy would be to refuse to attend the debate. It could really only help his opponents, given how terrible his debate performance is. If Trump doesn't attend, then it doesn't really matter how well the other candidates perform - no one can say they beat Trump in the debate.

MP avatar
MPbought Ṁ20 of YES

@JosephNoonan yeah, I understand that conceptually, you can go to Iowa and perhaps see a big surprise there. The caucus process makes people there very engaged and thoughtful. But absent death, I don't see how one would flip this market this year.

ShadowyZephyr avatar

@JosephNoonan I think you're underestimating Trump - or rather how his supporters think of him. He interrupts and uses tactics to get his way in debates, but his supporters seem to like that about him. I think he's more likely to attend a debate than not.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@ShadowyZephyr Participating in the debate is the only way for him to talk about something other than his ongoing criminal trials. By showing up and having everyone there tell him how unjustly he is being treated he will look great and then savage them all. Its so pathetic really, but also inevitable IMO. I really should stop betting against him because as @MP has correctly pointed out, there really isn't a foreseeable event that is going to derail him. Only common sense standards in his way, and well, that is not what it used to be...

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

Another factor to consider is Trump is going to be very unlikely to be able to delay ANY of the cases against him because the presiding judges are going to have to coordinate their schedules and delay is simply not in the cards. Plus he already burned almost all of his arguments that could delay the documents trial after the search of Mar a Lago and because Judge Cannon decided to embarrass herself the 11th Circuit put her in her place killing the idea that ANY of the documents could be considered his personal property, guaranteeing any pretrial motions would be moot.

I mean Trump definitely CANNOT just say "I have a debate that day so I won't be able to do a trial". Maybe if there was only one case against him, but it is already too much for that to be possible because judges have other cases and they are not going to ruin their lives anymore than Trump's constant personal threats and bullshit puffery are already almost certainly going to on their own. Trump's worst nightmare is if one of the Proud Boys tries to actually harm a judge or prosecutor. Eventually he goes from being a Secret Service detail to a Secret Service detainee.

My point is this case could be the first to trial and simply because the judicial branch is allowed to collude and their say is final Trump could be convicted by this time next year.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardsbought Ṁ10 of NO

Hunter’s inevitable indictment is going to be the tipping point.

MichaelWheatley avatar
Michael Wheatleypredicts NO

@BTE I don't follow. Hunter Biden being indicted will hurt Trump's nomination chances?

PlasmaBallin avatar
Plasma Ballin'predicts YES

@MichaelWheatley I think the logic is, "If Hunter gets indicted, Trump can't claim that his own indictment is unfair and politically motivated, so it will hurt him more."

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardsbought Ṁ10 of NO

@MichaelWheatley Absolutely. I have been watching interviews of his die hard supporters and that is the first thing every single one of the them say. What about Hunter? Not Hillary as much anymore. Another thing I noticed is that NONE of them were willing to say what Trump did wasn’t serious if true. So if you remove the bias and political motive Trump literally has no defense. I don’t believe Republicans are as willing to embrace losing the general election, but this market currently assumes that is how they will vote.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@MichaelWheatley If Trump couldn’t win as the incumbent BEFORE all the crazy shit he is accused of even happened he has literally no chance. He might lose 40-45 states if he continues with his temper tantrum like behavior. Maybe super MAGAland will stick with him, but more likely as a third Party candidate at this point. Can you really imagine Mitch McConnell and Mitt Romney standing by and letting him become the nominee without a vicious knife fight first? RHonna McDaniel is Mitt’s niece I believe and she is the truly powerful player in the nomination fight. Though I haven’t read the RNC rules in ages so perhaps she has been effectively smothered out by the Bannon crowd.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@MichaelWheatley it may come to light that he showed the documents to a foreign National he was engaged in business deals with and all of a sudden it looks like he is selling it or at least dealing on it. He is notorious for giving tours and showing off his stuff, he did it while president in the White House according to many accounts. Zero chance these documents weren’t seen by someone like Ken Griffin or something, someone Trump would be trying really hard to impress.

MP avatar
MPpredicts YES

@BTE you still need to come up with a name, if not Trump. RDS is a uncharismatic pos and tbh, if they move away from Trump, I am skeptical they're going to pick the degen copycat. And so far, no one seems to be getting any traction against Trump. Also, I don't expect Republicans to start giving up to create a single candidate to support against Trump.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@MP Youngkin is definitely getting in after Virginia state elections because he is limited to a single term as governor. He has the goods. Plus he misses the chaos of the first few debates. He comes in looking like the only adult in the room and people are gonna glom onto him and hope he can dispatch Trump without getting damaged too badly.

SemioticRivalry avatar
Semiotic Rivalrypredicts YES

@BTE Trump is up 31% in the primary polling average and has 52% vote share. He has only gained since indictment news. Even if he loses a ton of vote share from further news, he still has a massive cushion. Biden at this point in 2020 had 32% share in the polls and was up 16% over Bernie.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@MP Also Trump could be prevented from holding federal office if convicted on Espionage Act charges. Any of the 31 in fact. I personally think the Supreme Court would love to be the group that kills Trump by upholding the constitutionality of an obviously constitutional law. It will only make them more powerful ultimately.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@SemioticRivalry You still aren’t addressing why the Republicans will chose essentially a protest candidate because he CANNOT win the general election. I think 90 million people will come out to vote against him. He will be absolutely humiliated and everyone knows he will bitch and moan through it all. These charges are still fresh, let it simmer a bit and let’s revisit then.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@SemioticRivalry Trumps lead is much more about nobody with stardust as alternative. Let’s see how the trials age Trump. Now that it’s his ass on the line I bet he stresses the consequences a lot more than usual. He turned 77 this week and at that age with the pressure of basically having to shout down the federal government to defend himself. Think about it. Does that really not rapidly deteriorate him physically?!? I think the only thing he cares about is his own ass. He will give up the nomination if he is guaranteed no prison other than house arrest in Trump Tower or whatever.

SemioticRivalry avatar
Semiotic Rivalrypredicts YES

@BTE Trump lost by 0.6% in the tipping-point state in 2020 when Biden was at +6.2 favorability and Trump was at -12.8. Now both of them are around -15 favorability. I don't agree that he has no chance to win.

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/other/president/trumpbidenfavorability.html

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@SemioticRivalry LOL, he was the incumbent at a time of global emergency. He should have demolished Biden.

SemioticRivalry avatar
Semiotic Rivalrybought Ṁ0 of YES

@BTE I think favorability tells a more relevant story there

MP avatar
MPpredicts YES

I find @BTE a great forecaster and I admire him a ton, but he clearly missing the story here, possibly because he's politically biased. 40,000 people decided the last election and 69,000 decided the prior to that. This election is a coinflip and it's going to be until election day. (btw, I'll eventually create a market on that). And republicans know it, because the man literally lost by 40,000 votes (and 40% of the republicans even think he won!).

Trump already won this nomination. If he's stopped from running by the SCOTUS (a clear /MP/during-the-course-of-the-2024-elect YES), which I doubt a ton, I doubt a conservative-majority court will decide he can't run. Trump won because his opponents can't attack him, they need to argue they are better trumpists than trump himself, which is obviously false.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@MP You are making my point for me. The numbers you reference fail to account for how much he should have won by if he had merely maintained his margins in states he should have easily won. He beat Hillary by 5 points in Georgia so Biden didn’t beat him there by 11,800 or whatever, Biden gain 700,000 votes over Hillary vs Trump gaining 500k. There you have the real margin. I could go state by state and you will see it was FAR more lopsided. Also Hillary WAS NOT an incumbent so it was a fair fight in 2016, in 2020 he failed to leverage the biggest Trump card in history to win what should have been a cakewalk. Pun fully intended. This time the deck is stacked heavily AGAINST him because Biden knows how to use the advantage of the presidency.

I first got interested in forecasting when I predicted Trump winning in 2015 right about this far out from the election and I have the receipts I can dig up on my Facebook account for you. I was the first to see Trump coming and will be among thr first to confidently predict he is “toast”. Technically Bill Barr beat me to it.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@MP I appreciate the kind words, the respect and admiration is definitely mutual. Are you on Discord?

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@MP Also politics is the only thing I have any formal education in. My bias is with Publius.

MP avatar
MPpredicts YES

@BTE yes I am

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardsbought Ṁ100 of NO

@MP @SemioticRivalry happy to continue this on discord where the latency issues aren’t such a drag.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardspredicts NO

@MP imagine if Hunter Biden relapses or overdoses. Or commits suicide. The guy saw his mother, sister and brother all die while he escaped as a tortured artist who makes a fortune on the family name. He is fragile. It could happen any moment. And it would appear like Trump killed him.

BTE avatar
Brian T. Edwardsbought Ṁ100 of NO

@MP Also, Ted Cruz could step in any time and would probably beat the crap out of Biden and the other Republicans in the primary so far.