50-50 on Intrade. Unemployment rate over 6%, gas $3.50/gallon, eight years of disastrous Republican rule, running against a 72 year old man who never met a position he wouldn't take and a woman who belonged to an extremist church, has no relevant experience, and is a habitual liar. Part of it is that Obama is an awful candidate, but more of it is the Dem brand name, even now, has latent negative appeal. And then there is the media situation. If the Republicans win, running this campaign in these circumstances, it will be a disaster, not just because the Republicans won, but because of what it would say about the state of the American people.
Update (9:26 EST) At 48% now; McCain at 50%. It's hard to look at this stuff and not remember that a few days ago I thought this thing was in the bag. I expected fluctuations in the polls, but this is absurd. It's an 8-10 point swing, and the facts on the ground have gotten worse for the Republicans. Bad unemployment data, a report that --Gasp!-- the Bush people have fouled up Afghanistan (Where was "foreign policy expert" McCain while this was happening?), the failure of two of the biggest financial institutions in America. But the voters shrug all that off, and stare, slack jawed, at Sarah Palin's tits while she piles lie upon lie upon lie. And Obama has been unable to do anything to seize the initiative.
McCain is running ads on daytime television now, shows aimed entirely at women. Obama is getting so out-campaigned, it's like watching a good high schooler go one-on-one against an NBA player. Sure, the high schooler gets a few points, has a few moments, but.... All this, and there's still plenty of time to turn this around. I just don't see the mechanism of it, the how. How do you run a campaign when voters are willing to behave this irrationally?