Betting markets drop Hillary's chance of winning from 72% to 58% in one weekend

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Published by: Dan Calabrese on Wednesday September 14th, 2016

That's one heck of a bad weekend . . . for an extraordinarily bad candidate.

Betting markets are not scientific like polls, I guess, but they have things going for them that polls don't. If a pollster calls you and wants tto know what you think about something, it was the pollster - not you - who initiated the conversation and really wanted to know. You just decided to go along and respond. And you've really got no skin in the game, so you might tell the truth - you probably will - but the truth is you can say whatever you want and it will make no difference to you either way.

People who actually bet on things like the outcome of presidential elections are making a willful decision to do so, and they're putting their own money on the line. So they might still be wrong - maybe they believe the media too much, or too little (how that's possible I'm not sure), or they don't really read the movement in the polls correctly. But one thing you know is that they're invested in what they think.

So it's normal for someone who has led consistently in the polls to be running better than 70 percent odds of winning. After all, if you get 51 percent of the vote (OK, the electoral college), you get 100 percent of the victory. So it's not surprising that until this past weekend, the betting markets thought Hillary had a 72 percent chance of winning.

And normally any movement in the polls would have to be pretty severe and sustained to move those odds much. Yet look what happened in just three days:

Clinton's odds were at 72% Friday but dropped two percentage points following her comments Friday that you can put "half" of Donald Trump's supporters into a "basket of deplorables" -- people who are racist, sexist, homophobic or xenophobic.

However, a more significant drop came later, as fallout over her "deplorables" comment escalated and video of Clinton stumbling emerged. Her campaign said she is battling pneumonia.

CNN's Political Prediction Market is an online game administered by the company Pivit, which functions like an online market and allows Internet users to predict the outcome of the election. It is not to be confused with polls from real voters.

Clinton's odds of winning the presidency fell from 70% to 65% late Sunday morning upon abruptly leaving a September 11 memorial event after feeling "overheated," according to her campaign.

Video later revealed Clinton's wobbly exit out of the event at Ground Zero and her campaign announced Sunday evening that the Democratic nominee is battling pneumonia.

Clinton's numbers dropped to 62% by Sunday night and fell further to 58% Monday afternoon, as the Trump campaign slammed her for her "deplorables" comment.

It's not as if Trump soared into a 10-point lead in the polls over the weekend. In most polls he's still trailing, although not by nearly as much as he was. But what people saw this weekend was stark and undeniable evidence of what we've told you here for years - that Hillary is a terrible candidate. Whether it was the "deplorables" comment on Friday night or the lying about the health issue on Sunday, she looked sloppy, shrill and totally untrustworthy.

This is Hillary's intractable problem: Anyone who pays close attention to her knows that she always acts like this. She didn't just have a bad weekend. She had a normal weekend and for once people noticed. This is who she really is. She says insane things. She lies about everything. Her ideas are terrible. She's corrupt. She's shrill. She's not really very smart.

Because these things received so much coverage, a lot of people who just assumed she was the obvious choice over the raving lunatic (or so they'd been led to believe) Donald Trump actually saw a side of her that troubled them, and suddenly her odds of winning are sinking like a stone.

And I don't know how she recovers from that because people didn't just see a moment in time that will soon fade. They saw who she really is. And they don't like it. Nor should they. There's nothing to like.

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