What the Crikey Indicators Show. With so many opinion polls to keep track of I am opting to rely on the election indicator I compile based on the major betting exchanges operating on this and other elections. It gives Obama an 86% chance of becoming President to 14% for McCain.

As to what the vote will be I note that the Real Clear Politics average of the national polls it takes note of puts it at 49.9% for Obama and 43.9% for McCain. Exclude the support for other minor candidates and the undecideds and the split is 53 to 47 . The Iowa Electronic Market has the punters predicting 54% to 46% as the final outcome on Tuesday.

As to the other election indicators around the world there has been a modest improvement in the chance given to Labour in New Zealand.

Something to give a Republican heart. If I heard Karl Rove correctly on Fox earlier this week there are some 300 opinion polls being published in the United States on this presidential election. There’s plenty of opinion in that lot! Never before can an election campaign have been so studiously measured and virtually all of it of late must be depressing for a Republican.

But here’s something for conservatives to cling to as voting Tuesday approaches — the underdog effect works in weird and mysterious ways and John McCain is playing it for all he is worth. Americans can think of Harry Truman but Australians have the defeat of Jeff Kennett to remind them that certainties can get beaten.

There was a piece in the Washington Post this morning that provided what evidence is available for the final GOP efforts to scare voters about things like their tax bill under a President Barack Obama being successful. “Accuracy Of Polls a Question In Itself – Skeptics Challenge Assumptions Made” gives a rundown on why those 300 pollsters might be getting it wrong. And if you are a nervous nellie Democrat who wants to get even more frightened then have a look at the piece by Mark Steel in The Independent called “I’m frozen with fear — could Obama still lose the election?

Peter Fray

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