Paddy Power the leading Irish bookmaker has Barack Obama at 8/11 to win the 2012 presidential election.

That means you put down eleven dollars and win eight.

I suggest you run don't walk to take those odds.

End of year polls show Obama back up close to the 50 per cent approval rate.

They also show that he is pretty much even with Mitt Romney on a head to head and clear of Gingrich if he was the candidate.

All in all he is being enormously helped by the kookiness of the Republican primary.

Gingrich's insane comments to fire judges he doesn't agree with and Ron Paul's suddenly haunted past as anti Black, anti Gay crusader have suddenly brought even more questions to the fore about this Republican field.

Meanwhile, despite all this nonsense, Romney can't seal the deal, can't break out of the 22 or 23 per cent support range.

Also expect Romney to do poorly in Iowa. Those who turn out for those caucuses are the real right-wing groups plus evangelicals.

The colder the weather the poorer he will do. If he loses badly be could be toast and the Republican hopes to take the presidency go down the tube

Obama will be relaxing in Hawaii wondering if he could be any luckier.

He has been an uninspiring president, too eager to please on too many occasions and always acting like he knew best no matter what the public thought.

Despite all that he matches up as an adult compared to this Republican field.

He can only pray it is not Romney, but even if it is, the sight of those Republicans ready to close down Congress -- again-- over the tax break for employers and employees battle sends its own signal.

Obama must be counting those lucky stars as he looks up at the Hawaii sky.