Republican South Dakota Sen. John Thune may not be doing so hot in the polls for potential GOP presidential candidates in 2012. Indeed, he scored just 2 percent support from Republican voters in the latest Quinnipiac Poll. But on two of the three important political exchanges — where speculators buy futures contracts to bet on candidates for
the nomination — Thune stands in third place, behind only ex-Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and ex-Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, The Hill reports.
Investors see Thune as almost twice as likely to win as the fourth-place finisher, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.
“Polls reflect the current state of knowledge of the electorate, where things like name recognition are a huge issue. But there are people you feel will run a strong campaign, and name recognition won’t be a problem come 2012, so it’s not uncommon to see a very large divergence a long way out between polls and markets,” Justin Wolfers, an economist at the University of Pennsylvania with expertise on political markets, tells The Hill.
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