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. Not Reality Not Liz

    That's Reality-How about some comments other than the same old
    tired right wing propanganda-attack the messenger because you can't attack the message

    July 3, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  2. Chief

    Most of these posts show that you Obama supporters are as naive as your candidate. If you believe Obama is ahead in Montana by 5 points, you will believe anything. Hope you're not too broken hearted in November when your rookie doesn't win.

    July 3, 2008 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  3. randy


    July 3, 2008 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  4. Susan, CA

    Hey Peter,

    You hit the nail right on the head. Talk about inexperience...Bush never even traveled outside of this Country before being elected President, yet he was elected.

    July 3, 2008 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  5. Canadian View

    Why do you allow some of this crap to be poster and repeted timr and time again
    Let everyone post a comment and hold back on some of those repeaters

    July 3, 2008 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  6. JillyBean

    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.

    Yeah but that election was rigged don't forget about the Florida debacle

    July 3, 2008 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  7. Redneck from Kentucky

    The more I learn about John McCain the less I like him and the less I trust him. I honestly worry about his temperament and don't think he is the person who should be leading this countries armed forces. I am positively certain he is the wrong choice to fix our economy.

    July 3, 2008 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  8. Ian M

    If the Hispanics don't trust Obama why does he have a 40-point lead over McCain 68-28 with Hispanics

    July 3, 2008 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  9. Michael

    Wow! What a big lead! I mean six points, that's a blow out. McCain should just give up and go home. The truth of the matter, CNN, is that McCain says nothing, does nothing, raises little money compared to Obama, yet holds his own. Obama should be nervous. His money and spending did not help him that much in many key battleground states during the primary.

    July 3, 2008 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  10. joemarsh

    John McCain is too old.

    July 3, 2008 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  11. Politico

    I'm an Obama girl, but even I admit these polls don't mean much so early. Anything can happen... I'm sure my boy will stay sharp!

    July 3, 2008 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  12. amt Fresno, Ca

    Why vote for McSame, it will be a vote for McBush, just more of the same. Nothanks McSame. Obama for Pres 08

    July 3, 2008 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  13. McCain=the draft

    Only Obama can shake-up Washington!
    It won't happen with Washington entrenched McCain.

    July 3, 2008 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  14. Ex- Republican for Obama

    McDone is well cooked. Grab a fork and help yourself, already!



    July 3, 2008 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  15. brian

    Obama-nites should be worried. CNN, CNBC and every other media outlet have absoluted adored everything about Obama. They have trashed McCain and make a big deal about any minor mistake he makes. The economy is bad, gas prices sky high and all you have to show for it is a 5 or six point lead.

    Hillary voters don't trust Obama and counting on their vote will cost them. If 10 or 15% of Hillary dems vote for McCain (which is possible), McCain will win easily.

    Changes do need to be made but socialism is not the way to prosperity. GO MCCAIN

    July 3, 2008 08:09 pm at 8:09 pm |
  16. Patriot Woman

    The only time CNN prints a pro-McCain comment is when someone complains about having left comment after comment with "moderator waiting" and it never appears. For everyone this has happened to, believe me, I understand. OBAMA=Thin Resume, No Experience, History of Cocaine Abuse, Terrorist and Criminal Friends, Racist with Racist Pastor and Church. VOTE SMART! Vote Sen. John McCain '08

    July 3, 2008 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  17. Josh

    Polls are equal to pointless speculation . Who's with me??

    July 3, 2008 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  18. Jim

    Anyone who thinks Obama will win in Montana or the South is dreaming.

    For Obama to win, he needs to win the swing states of Ohio and Pennsylvania. McCain will play very well in Pennsylvania and John Kasich from Ohio as a running mate would take care of both states for him.

    Obama should be real concerned about that, because with the 1 1/2 year recession in Michigan under Democrat leadership and gasoline prices up $1.70 a gallon since Pelosi and her pals took over, this could be a rout.

    Obama and his new taxes stand for change, because that's all that will be left in your pocket when he's done. (I know this won't get by the CNN moderators).

    July 3, 2008 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  19. sweetie

    The Democratic Party is trying to act united and brave. They are far from united. Brave is a joke, they won 3 out of 10 elections in 40 years, two by a Clinton. The Democratic Party has endless actions by democrats against them. Millions of democrats do not accept the way Obama was selected and the party is hushing this. Far left West Coast Progressive Liberals truly believe everyone will vote for Obama in November because he is pro-choice and will choose the judges. They are so infactuated by Obama they are failing to be objective. In the meantime thre are democrats who do not like and will not vote for Obama because they saw how he ran his campaign and how he continues to use media manipulation and Bush styalized tactics against free speech. His whole strategy is to demonize Bush, yet his own ideas and stances are so vague. He hopes to get into the White House because he did not sign the bill that Bush used to go to war. He could not vote as he was not yet elected to the senate. Now he is using anger agaist the war and security policies to build his coalition of supporters. He and the DNC blocked the THE PEOPLES voices in Florida and Michigan. 5 States broke the rules yet only 2 states were punished. Democrats will rebel in November by choosing Mc Cain because they do not believe he is another George Bush. They believe that Obama presents much more a likelyhood of a 3rd Bush term as well as a highly probable danger to national security and other strategic national interests.

    July 3, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  20. Gary Chandler in Canada

    Bush to attend Olympics ceremonies.
    More easing of World tensions by Bush. It's clear he is pulling the rug out under McCain's major campaign hope. …on the road to detente with North Korea, talks expected with Iran after European talks work out the nuclear issue, peace in Iraq, cell phones in Cuba.
    If he liked McCain, he would be manufacturing some crisis and terror for his buddy.
    (((To put things in perspective,,, imagine you had ONLY two choices for president, – Bush? or McCain? who would you choose?…
    things that make you go hmmmm…. somebody should do a poll)))

    July 3, 2008 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  21. Tommy Hussein in St. Louis

    That's Reality July 3rd, 2008 6:36 pm ET

    Hey Liz – Young people supported Hitler, too. People wanted change then, too. They got change; the whole world got change, but evidently you weren't around then, or maybe you think like Ahmadinejad. I know this won't get past the CNN moderators but they did say "Leave Your Comment". How 'bout some comments other than the tired old liberal propaganda.


    Sorry, but comparing Obama to Hitler, or Obama's supporters to Hitler's, is not a real argument. It is just desperation of the feeble-minded.

    July 3, 2008 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  22. Danel

    McCain is breaking world record by not showing up in the senate when his vote counts the most. 70% of the time he didn't show up and yet get credits for the GI bills that he opposed. DUH!!!

    July 3, 2008 08:21 pm at 8:21 pm |
  23. tom, boston

    the neo-cons, the corpo-cons, and the zionist AIPAC are breathing heavily down his neck against his original stance regarding Iraq.

    they know Obama's gonna be the next POTUS, and they are pulling every trick out of the Karl Rove book on Obama.

    Senator Obama, do whatever it takes to get elected. we understand.

    and then we can sweep washington of all the rubbish.

    July 3, 2008 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  24. cecimor

    The Obomination campaign is a campaign of lies and flip-flops and of course, BO, definately is a man of change, he is always changing his mind. How can anyone believe anything he says. I wish the people will wake up to him. Obama, will do or say anything to win the White House, it won't be long before he rolls his wife gently, and slowly under the bus. As you can see they are making her go through a complete makeover, how can she stand it, pretty soon she will be a shadow of herself. I don't think she will put up with it for very long. Obama, will not win the Hispanic vote or Christian vote because of his stance on the social issues. He is for partial birth abortion, and gay marriage, Abortion is the scorge of our time, especially when those being aborted are mostly Africans and African Americans, He is for genocide of his own people. I feel that modern day abortion is worst than slavery. I pray that God will have mercy on the USA. Thank God for McCain, he is at least more honest and cares in his heart I believe for the safety and good of the American people. GO MCCAIN....

    July 3, 2008 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
  25. chere

    NOBAMA! Anyone but a lying flip flopping Marxist!

    July 3, 2008 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
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