Rumor reaches us that the Irish bookie Paddy Power has paid out early on Republican Scott Brown winning the special election in Massachusetts for the late Ted Kennedy's seat.

It's hard to tell if they have or not because there's no record of any such bets on their website (although they are quoting Brown at 20/1 to be the Republican presidential candidate in 2012.)

However, if the stories are true and they have in fact paid out, this could be very good news for Democrat Martha Coakley.

A reader tells us that in 2008, Paddy Power "lost hundreds of thousands of euro by paying out early on the Lisbon Treaty. They've gotten several by-elections wrong here too. This will cost them very little - this is Ireland, where Ted Kennedy was a HERO. Nobody would ever have bet on the evil Republicans taking his seat."