In 2008, the professional election pundits and pollsters contemptuously thumbed their noses at Intrade, the online gambling site. It was inconceivable that ordinary bettors could possibly best America's most astute and brilliant election pundits and pollsters. But in the end it was the Intrade gamblers had the last laugh in 2008. The Intrade gamblers got closer than anybody on their calls and by a wide margin. They predicted that Obama would win with 364 electoral votes. Obama won with 365 electoral votes to McCain's 173.
In 2008 Intrade had given Obama a 65% probability of winning, here.
The New York Times chirped in on the issue and acknowledged that its own highly respected pundit, Nate Silver, was off by 18 electoral votes.
Bettors Beat Pundits
Fast forward to 2012. Right now Intrade gamblers are giving Obama a 57.1% probability of winning in November to Romneys' 42.5%. Obama isn't quite as strong as he was in 2008 but the Man of Change who didn't change a damn thing is still comfortably ahead even through he will lose some of the red to purple states that he managed to flip to blue in 2008.
New Hampshire 54:45
New Mexico 57:42
North Carolina 50:49
The current Intrade numbers have pretty much remained the same throughout the 2012 election season and after the fiasco known as the RNC Convention, Romney just can't seize on anything that could deliver a sustainable bump. The customarily staid, flip flopping and boring Romney fails to inspire any voter excitement and ditto for his equally boring VP choice. Paul Ryan is coming under attack from a variety of ideological sides on issues ranging from his lies about running a marathon in under 3 hours to his insanely convoluted and big spending budget that doesn't even balance the budget until 2040 while spending trillions on the wars and military.
Obama has definitely incurred the wrath of the largely anti-war Democratic base over his continuation of Bush/Cheney foreign policy while starting new military interventions but the Republican base can't seem to want for anything except more wars. By appeasing the Republican base, Romney succeeded in alienating independent voters. Then there's the GOP's vicious treatment of the 2 million plus Ron Paul supporters who were literally run out of the Republican Party and the RNC Convention.
Romney and the Republican Party may be in dire need of holding on to every possible constituent voting block to even stand a chance of winning in November but they instead have opted to pursue a policy of arrogance and utter contempt for those conservatives who refuse to toe the party line by questioning the sanity of its big government agenda.
The GOP's scorched earth policy will indeed butt heads with the scorched earth policy of conservative liberty activists who are so incensed that their only goal is to guarantee that the Republican Party loses in November.