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. Eph from NYC

    You think this is close? I don't, change is a tidal wave

    July 3, 2008 09:57 pm at 9:57 pm |
  2. Freedom?

    Sad how iconic, Hollywood-ish publicity has put Obama where he is. He has changed his stance when he promised: an end to the war, — gay marriage — taking money from special interests — single payer universal health care — public financing — FISA –and illegal immigration, just to name a few. I'm sure the list will grow as he tries to bring more independents over to his side, typical politician, exactly what is the change he is referring to in his speeches? Please America pay attention to this CONMAN and PLEEESE look at his non-non partisan record……
    These polls seem to flip flop as much as he does it seems we cannot believe the polls or Obama.

    July 3, 2008 09:57 pm at 9:57 pm |
  3. JonRoss

    Praise Allah for bringing us such a man as Obama !!

    July 3, 2008 09:57 pm at 9:57 pm |
  4. Boston For OBAMA

    OBAMA will be the next president.
    get over it haters. The United States of America needs change now.

    OBAMA 08

    July 3, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  5. Jim

    Obama is a Coward. Plain and simple. At least we have 4 months to expose the real Obama to the American people. Open your eyes America.

    July 3, 2008 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |

    wisdom............We do not trust Obama. We are with you Peakarach.
    NOOBAMA................Trust in GOD.!!!

    Obama 08

    July 3, 2008 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  7. Charlotte

    The Democrats lost their best chance to win in November. We can look forwad to McCain and pray he is a whole lot better then Bush. I beleive he will be more central and work with both sides as he has proven he will do. Ex: Finegold, Kennedy...I will write Hillary on my ballot in November and let the chips fall where they may.

    July 3, 2008 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  8. Sally in Cali

    Dr. Boob is a hate monger. People of tired of the rhetoric.

    America needs change. Barack Hussein Obama is the hope of our future. There was a time in our history when the name Hussein meant "friend". King Hussein of Jordan was America's friend. How quickly we forget.

    July 3, 2008 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  9. julie

    CNN political researcher Alan Silverlieb shows his liberal bias, like the rest of CNN and the rest of the liberal media. he says that now the question is whether Obama's lead will hold or even expand, not even mentioning the very real possibility that his lead will diminish.

    July 3, 2008 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm |
  10. Nobama

    Nobama is campaigning on CHANGE=FLIPFLOP

    July 3, 2008 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  11. Richard

    I am republican who will be voting for Obama. He is the better candidate with policies Americans want.

    July 3, 2008 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  12. Obama/Yo'Mama (obviously a joke)

    Eh, this poll has barely changed. Its been around the 4-8 point gap sense Obama got the nomination. It would really be news if the gap gets to 10 points.

    July 3, 2008 10:13 pm at 10:13 pm |
  13. John Hussein Riley

    Haters go home. I don't hate McCain and even don't hate George Bush as bad as he's lied to us and ruined our country and the world for generations to come. This should be about issues and issues only, nothing else.

    If you hate Obama maybe you have other issues within yourself that you need to look at.

    I want change. I want Obama

    July 3, 2008 10:16 pm at 10:16 pm |
  14. Mike Dallas

    Folks, polls are statistical analysis to provide a TREND. The poll is not to select a winner in November, or anything else, other than to show a TREND in the nation's choice of candidate's preference from one timeframe to another. In these cases, there is a rising TREND that Americans favor Obama over McCain by 6%. This TREND is subject to changes from one timeframe to another, either up or down, for either candidate. However, overtime, and that time from now until November, it will show the TREND of the voter's choices both positive and negative.

    Does anyone out there see a theme here???

    July 3, 2008 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |
  15. gobo

    You keep on tealling people that the race is to close. You say Obama's lead is within the margin of error. You say it is to early that Obama's lead does not perdict anything. Well, dream as you wish to make the race sound close and so you can generate hype. But the fact that Obama consitently leads every poll whether within the margin of error or not is not a good not to McCain.

    July 3, 2008 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |
  16. New Yorker

    "Change we can believe in"? What would that be ? Islam instead of Judeo-Christian?

    July 3, 2008 10:19 pm at 10:19 pm |
  17. Vig

    Obama is only "up" because the media keeps feeding the public this notion. As is becoming more clear, Obama is not ready nor suited to be President. He should just own up to that fact. What Obama has is a high need for status and he has the ego to absorb it. He wears it well. Under this facade is a flip-flopping, inexperienced individual who could serve his country best by returning to the Senate and doing his time. Bring back Hillary. Restore her hijacked nomination.

    July 3, 2008 10:20 pm at 10:20 pm |
  18. Fella from Chicago

    To Dick in Sioux Falls–So you're an 82 year old white man for Obama who writes with the eloquence of a 32 year old white man. I'm so relieved now. I was hestitate whether I wanted to "waste" my vote on a 71 year old white man, but you've put those fears to rest. John McCain, thanks to Dick in Siouz Falls you're going to get my vote in November.

    July 3, 2008 10:21 pm at 10:21 pm |
  19. saga4obama

    Hispanic For McCain July 3rd, 2008 7:08 pm ET

    All you Liberal Dem face the Facts OBAMA is NOT TRUSTED to the AMERICAN people. The American people especially the Hispanic people don't trust OBAMA. all of these polls about Obama winning the Latinos vote are not true. I have news for all of you Liberals Morons John McCain will win the Latinos Vote this election and he will win in OH, FLA, MI, PA, that is two Blue States turning RED!!!!. Maybe NJ, CT, and MA. He will win BIG TIME!!!!.


    ok amigo...i know you came to the US to enjoy the American dream...and to many that Dream is white...it seems to me that you might have some miss givings about a scary Black man. ask McCain about his role in the tragedy in 1967, giving up military information as a POW ask McCain about Keating 5 and his ties to the "mob" ask McCain why wont he release his Military records.
    Amigo...please keep in mind too that you are able to have a voice in this country because of the BLOOD SWEAT AND TEARS of the black people of this country...my brown brother, get a grip

    July 3, 2008 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  20. Silence DoNoGood

    I think it's time to wake up and smell the coffee. Our country (including the media) is controlled by the rich and the powerful. They didn't want Hillary because she is for the people. oddly enough they don't want McCain either because he is also for the people. Please think for yourself America. Obama is already bought and paid for. Only the rich and powerful could have put him where he is today with no experience and surrounded by shady characters. People that refuse to vote for him are being silenced. McCain is the only choice because staying home, writing Hillary's name in or voting for a third party candidate won't keep Obama out of the Whitehouse. Obama can't keep his stories straight and has embraced half of W's policies already.

    July 3, 2008 10:23 pm at 10:23 pm |
  21. N.K.

    Polls, polls, polls!! I have never been polled, and nobody I ask ever has been either. Has anyone out there ever actually been polled?? It reminds me for the great medfly scare in the early 80's. Supposedly, there were millions of them posing a dire threat to the California crops. Yet, nobody had ever seen one!

    July 3, 2008 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  22. Lynn E

    I do think that Mc Cain is acceptable for the Republicans but Obama for the Democrats? The Democratic party should think very hard before just handing the party over to him at the convention. I'm a life long Democrat not voting for him and many others are becoming dissatisfied with him. The man came out from nowhere, couldn't bother with working at his job in the senate and then decided to run for President. He doesn't even know what he doesn't know because he's too inexperienced and ignorant. He pretty much was put up for the senate by Chicago pols and it is the same with the presidency. Rather than being a human, he is more like David Axelrod's Frankenstein. God knows who's writing the speeches, if his earpiece falls out, he can't even string sentences together. I don't approve of Mc Cain's policies, but I do know he is a human who takes work seriously and tries hard. He has a temper (Obama is known to have one too.) but is pretty independent of thought when it comes right down to it. Even the fact that the Republicans decided to let him in on the Columbia hostage crisis says something. He'll earn respect with Latino voters visiting their homelands and supporting free trade. We need these countries and the connection people here have with them are important.

    July 3, 2008 10:25 pm at 10:25 pm |
  23. Peachy Keen

    So who do you want for your President.....a man who bets thousands of dollars each roll of the dice on the Vegas craps tables and whose wife spends 750 thousand a month on her credit cards, or a man with some common sense who plays $3 a hand poker.

    Easy choice.

    Obama 08

    July 3, 2008 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  24. Michael

    Slowpoke July 3rd, 2008 6:32 pm ET

    What's up with giving a speech on a runway/
    I think he had to make a quick landing to defend CHANGING his position on getting troops out of Iraq - or maybe to defend his patriotism. Whatever. It is refreshing to see just him, a lecturn and a plane. Usually we have to see him with his cast of thousands.

    July 3, 2008 10:29 pm at 10:29 pm |
  25. RJ, CA

    Obama is a forty-something academician who has no idea of real life.

    July 3, 2008 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm |
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