One problem we have using the five-element story model to analyze political campaigns is how to accurately measure the PASSION that a candidate is actually generating. Polls are very good at finding out how many people share a candidate’s POV – their success at becoming the party’s potential HERO. But it is passion that motivates actual turnout. This is particularly true in primaries. In our model Passion equals Fire, so another way to say this is ”How do you accurately determine how hot a candidate really is?”
One way is to look at the money. Cash is the fuel every campaign burns. But fundraising is only accurately reported quarterly. By that time the relation between the giving and any specific political position (the reason for the increase or decrease in passion) doesn’t show up. You had better believe the campaign is acutely aware of it, but the rest of us are in the dark.
Josh Marshall at TalkingPointsMemo – an absolute must follow site – is using the betting odds on candidates to do just this. He says he is using the odds to show “conventional wisdom on how the candidates stand,” but we think he is on to something much more interesting. Check out his analysis of Obama.
Whether you’re betting on the horses, the world’s series, or a candidate, if you don’t feel that heat, you don’t make the bet. And if you are a player, (and if you aren’t you won’t be betting on one of the major sites) when you stop feeling it you immediately take your money off the table. That makes these odds ones to follow. Find out more about the “candidate futures markets” here.