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I Would Not Be Shorting McCain Now

By John McIntyre

Over at NRO's The Corner, Kathryn Jean Lopez has a post on McCain's move into first in the new Pew Research (national poll). She adds an update from an e-mailer commenting on McCain's chances for the nomination:

"Don't bet on it."

In case you haven't seen these types of contracts before, it's from TradeSports (, and they bet money on contracts. A contract price of 50 is the 50/50 point with anything above 50 being "more likely" and anything below 50 being "less likely." The closer the contract price is to extremes indicates bettors' confidence in the contract. You can see for yourself where McCain is for the GOP nomination. Not that it couldn't change, but right now, the odds are low.

Well the e-mailer must not be watching the political futures on McCain. After languishing in single digits since his summer implosion McCain's odds have over tripled; moving from a Dec 1 close of 6.8% to a close last night at 22.3%.

If his odds are low, they are better than most in the GOP field as he is basically tied with Mitt Romney for second. Interestingly (and not insignificant), for all the talk of Giuliani's demise he still trades in the top slot with a last trade at 27.3, Romney currently stands at 23.9 with McCain barely behind at 23.4. Huckabee is a distant fourth at 11.4.

Don't be surprised if McCain is the clear favorite on Intrade a week from today.

John McIntyre is the co-founder & President of RealClearPolitics. Email:

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