How does one bet on presidential elections?

I’m thinking of flying to Las Vegas and betting the house on John Kerry. Where I sit, it’s going to be a Democratic landlide — an assertion which, if you insist on having an argument, ought to be taken to great debates (as always, I am looking to avoid confronatation). I am a greenhorn in these matters, so before I purchase my e-ticket, I need to find out a thing or two or three:

Can you lock your bet based on the current odds? If not, when is betting shut down?

Can I bet on a generic Democratic candidate if Kerry should kick the bucket? Or is it like a horse race where bets are returned on a late scratch?

Are there any reliable (legal) locations where I can go place a bet closer to the Northeastern seaboard such as Foxwoods?

Finally, if you know that much about gambling, what on earth are you doing here?

I don’t think you can vote bet on anyting (legally that is) except sporting events in the US.

You can however bet on the election in England and online.

Here are the odds at the moment…

I don’t know about “reliable” or “legal”, but you might want to check your local university - there’s probably someone running a pool over there. I, for one, fully intend to engage in a bit of bookmaking come November.

(Um. That’s a joke. I don’t do illegal things. Really.)