July 4th, 2008
06:35 AM ET
10 years ago

Polls: Obama up, but race remains close


Obama holds a small lead over McCain, 4 months before the election, but previous summer polls don't always predict the outcome in November. (AP Photo)

(CNN) - The race for the White House remains tight as American heads into the July 4 weekend, a new CNN poll of polls shows.

In the latest CNN survey of four recent national polls, Barack Obama holds a 6 point lead over John McCain, 48 percent to 42 percent. That represents a slight increase for the Illinois senator over the last week: in a CNN Poll of polls released last Friday, Obama topped the Arizona senator by 5 points.

“As we hit the July 4 holiday weekend, the presidential polls seem to have settled into a stable pattern,” said CNN Senior Political Researcher Alan Silverleib. “Obama’s lead in our polling average has been holding relatively steady around the five percent mark for almost a month. The question now is whether that lead will hold — or possibly even expand — as we turn our attention to the conventions and the campaigns start advertising more.”

The presumptive presidential nominee has clearly increased his lead from one month ago: in a CNN poll of polls conducted June 2, when Hillary Clinton was still in the race, Obama led McCain by only one point, 46 percent to 45 percent.

But how predictive are presidential polls four months before the election? Not very.

Consider where the presidential race stood in 2004 heading into the July 4 weekend: then, John Kerry held a 4 point lead over Bush in a CNN poll of polls, 49 percent to 45 percent, a lead that evaporated by November. And in 2000, Bush was up 6 points over Gore at this point in the summer — and the outcome that year, of course, was one of the narrowest electoral victories in the nation's history.

Related: Election Center

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (245 Responses)
  1. Carol

    Do you guys ever read this ticker?

    These polls are ridiculous and contradict themselves daily, if not, several times a day.

    Scroll back through your own ticker......... you will see headlines like, "polls show people don't like Obama's wife", then the next one says "polls show people adore Obama's wife". then .."polls show people like both candidates wives equally",

    Then we get " polls show Obama and McCain in dead heat", next "polls show McCain trailing Obama", then "polls show Obama's having a hard time reaching out to such & such group"

    This stuff is useless!

    July 3, 2008 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  2. Sherry

    Unless the people of America want world war three to become a reality , they better vote for Obama.

    Obama will bring honor and respect from other nations back to America.

    McCain will continue to further put our country in decay and doom.

    Lets bring some bright change to the U.S.

    With Obama we can

    July 3, 2008 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  3. Rick

    As far as I am concerned until the votes are counted Obama will always be the underdog. Don't trust any of these polls that make McCain look like he is trailing in this election. I don't trust the media either because I feel that even at CNN the movers and shakers want McCain to win and everyone knows that this country likes underdogs. So if the mainstream media makes McCain look like an underdog that only helps him.

    July 3, 2008 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  4. Jason

    I’m tired. I have voted republican in the last 3 presidential elections. I think its time for a change.

    July 3, 2008 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  5. Allwoman

    True That Liz! True That!

    July 3, 2008 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  6. Suziku

    I sure hope Liz from Atlanta, GA. is right!!! This country is in desperate need for change and mcbush/mcsame offers NO change, he's just an older bush.

    July 3, 2008 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  7. Griff

    Jump on that plane Mr Obama... Flee while you can!

    July 3, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  8. Drew NJ

    ...I predict Obama will win this election with a greater lead than the current six points. People are tired of Bush, and don't want his chosen successor to rule with his policies.

    July 3, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  9. chris

    only Senator Clinton is capable of being the best President that our children, our troops and our Nation desperately needs right now.....its on your conscience if you choose to compromise the best interests of those named above by supporting a lesser candidate for President

    July 3, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  10. Jack from California

    Once the people of America realize that John McCain represents four more years of George Bush.

    Look at these past 8 years and see if you want more of the same!

    July 3, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  11. Timber

    Don't fool yourselves, it is VERY early days yet. McCain is going to pull this off. The Dems have a horrible win record. They (the DNC)are just WAY out of touch with the people. Thats why I am now an Independent. I am not a big McCain fan, but I am realistic. Hillary would have blown him out of the water. Oh well.

    July 3, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  12. old hand

    how come Obama hasn't been able to pull away? almost half the people still seem to want McCain – what's Obama doing wrong?

    July 3, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  13. Tony, Miami

    If the polls will change drastically in October why not wait until at least the end of September after the 2 conventions. We will see more clearly who is really ahead.

    July 3, 2008 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  14. The true young person revolution

    Will always be with Ron Paul. We actually understand what real change means for America, and Obama is nothing more than the average politician. Don't you ever tell me this is the young person revolution.

    July 3, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  15. C-I-Told-U-so!

    The CHANGE has already happened CNN!!! So you can try to cloak our vision with the "Barack is a flip flopper crap all you want!"

    July 3, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  16. 4obama

    John McCain...in Columbia on the celebration of our great Nation
    Barack Obama...IN AMERICA on the celebration of our great Nation...who is the Patriot again?
    why wont McCain release his Military records?
    if McCain is "not" like Bush why hire Steve?
    people still question Obamas faith...what is McCains?
    why has McCain not denounced the comments made by Black and Lieberman? after their remarks we had 2 people on both coast pose as terrorist..1 in LAX. how can McCain be so indignant with Clark's correct statement yet silent with his own peoples irresponsibility?

    stop the motion...join the movement

    July 3, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  17. Griff

    I forgot to add... Pick up your dime's on the runway as you leave....

    July 3, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  18. White folks please coming from a white man

    I can't wait to see Obama win this election.

    Go Obama '08

    July 3, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  19. A nightingale Sings in Berkley Square

    Geez another CNN fantasy poll. Give me a break.

    BTW, this guy, Obama, has to the idiot of all times.. What does he think will happen, if we unilaterally pull out of Iraq in haste. He has no sense.

    Iraq will become easy pickings for Iran to send their terrorists into Iraq and create the kind of atmosphere that some countries found themselves in during the great Blitz Krieg of 1939 -1940 ie Norway, Denmark, Poland, Belgium and Holland to name a few. Hitler wanted to protect these countries from outside enemies and overthrew their legal governments. Iran would do the same to Iraq in a heartbeat.

    Let's not let the liberal senator recreate history and lose this valuable resource to the western world.

    Give me a break send Obama packing back his ultra liberal roots.

    July 3, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  20. Ben

    I hope we have an honest and fair election this year. I'm tired of sneaky, under-the-table attacks like those swift boat veterans from last time...

    July 3, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  21. Lynn Ensley

    Barrack Obama will win this election by the biggest landslide ever. 66% of the vote at least. People of this country are running away from the travesty the Bush Administration and the Republican Party exacted on our country in the last two terms. We will suffer long and hard for Bush's inept service.

    July 3, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  22. Nate

    Change? What kind of change? Obama does offer change. But not the change we nead. I am all for change if its for the better. Obamas is not.
    McCain '08!

    July 3, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  23. JonRoss

    If you support Obama you should ask yourself what he means when he says "change". He is on both sides of most issues so no one really know where he stands. He has a Marxist background which means he is going to tell you what type of car you can buy, where you can go, what you can eat, how much you can eat, what the temperature in your apartment or house can be, what your children are taught. You will lose the right to make all of these decisions and more. His philosophy is similar to Joseph Stalin and Vladamir Lenin who caused the deaths of 100 million people. Be very careful about that :"revolution" you rooting for.

    July 3, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  24. Andy

    And with Obama now polling ahead of McCain in Montana, many formerly red states are clearly becoming swing states. McCain is on the defensive in states he has to win, and is going to have to fight hard to keep Virginia, New Mexico, Nevada, Alaska, Montana, North Dakota, and North Carolina in the Republican column.

    July 3, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  25. Jean

    This is the year for the DEMOCRATS!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    July 3, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10