In the BagPosted by Smokey Stover on September 27, 2008 at 18:58
In Reply to: In the Bag posted by James Briggs on September 24, 2008 at 10:24:
: : : : The origin of "In the Bag"
: : : : Having studied politics and visited the House of Commons I was lead to beleive that the saying "in the bag" originated from a bag which sits behind the speaker of the house. For Prime Ministers question time, an MP would submit his question to the PM by placing it in the bag. Henceforth when constituents or journelists would ask an MP if they had asked the PM a question on a specific subjct they would respond, "Its in the bag". No idea on dates for this however.
: : : Well, I heard a Kentucky lawmaker use the phrase "in the bag" and he meant drunk. I am guessing that referred to the brown paper bag that people use to conceal their liquor. But that's a whole 'nother meaning.
: : As you can read on this site, the phrase with that meaning first shows up in America in the 1920's. Tour guides are well known around here to be sources of completely unfounded information when it comes to word and phrase origins.
: An alternative origin says that the bag is one which holds birds and other small game which have been shot and are on their way home to the cooking pot.
I'm with Briggsy. What's "in the bag" is what has been captured or obtained, or as good as got, usually the latter. In colloquial use it means "it's as good as done," or sometimes "it has been done." Or I'm wrong, also a valid possibility.