July 30th, 2008
04:13 PM ET
10 years ago

Poll shows Obama's trip didn't change race

Obama's trip abroad did little to alter the presidential race.

Obama's trip abroad did little to alter the presidential race.

(CNN) - It was a weeklong trip that drew blanket media coverage and sharp criticism from Republicans, but Barack Obama's recent tour abroad did little to alter the standing of the presidential race, a new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll shows.

According to the survey - the first national poll conducted entirely after the Democratic presidential candidate's trip to Iraq, Afghanistan, the Middle East, and Europe - the race for the White House has remained virtually unchanged since late June, with Obama holding a 51-44 percent edge over Sen. John McCain. In a similar poll conducted one month ago, Obama held a 5-point lead over the senator from Arizona , 50-45 percent.

The CNN poll of polls, an average of several recent national surveys, tells the same story - a single-digit lead for Obama (48-45 percent) that keeps McCain within easy striking distance of his Democratic rival with less than 100 days before voters weigh in at the polls.

The new survey also suggests the trip - carefully designed to burnish Obama's foreign policy credentials - did little to alter voters' perceptions of how the Illinois senator would handle national security issues.

"Did Obama's trip help his standing with the public on foreign policy issues? Not really," CNN Polling Director Keating Holland said. "Obama has not picked up any ground against McCain on foreign issues and some 52 percent think McCain would do a better job than Obama on the war in Iraq - virtually the same number who felt that way in April."

The poll also shows the presumptive Republican presidential nominee has an edge on terrorism, Iran, Afghanistan and the Middle East - in fact, every foreign policy and national security issue addressed tilts toward McCain. (Terrorism, Afghanistan, Iraq, Middle East, Iran, and Immigration.)

But in what is good news for Obama, the poll suggests few of the McCain campaign's criticisms of the trip have stuck - especially charges Obama was presumptuously acting as if he had already won the election, and claims he nixed a visit with injured troops because members of the media could not accompany him.

Instead, more than two-thirds of voters surveyed said the trip was appropriate for a presidential candidate, and 72 percent think Obama cares abut veterans and the troops currently in Iraq.

Full story

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain • Polls
soundoff (429 Responses)
  1. jenkins

    i like both mccain and obama but still struggling to understand how Obama is qualified to be president. I would vote for him if he actually had something in his background that was amazing. I simply cannot find that "thing". I also can't find much that I dislike about Obama. He's a very likeable person. So is John McCain.

    July 30, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  2. Jenna

    I dont think it is looking very good for the nominee....

    July 30, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  3. Elinn

    America, please...do the right thing this time...vote for the guy who you know is telling the truth...

    if you cannot figure this one out by now, i guess i will see you here 4 years from now with the same complaints.

    Lets give Barack a big win, a landslide, lets do it and turn this whole country into one color..BLUE.....problems sloved. Think

    July 30, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  4. JB

    Polls in July mean..... oh yeah, NOTHING.

    This race was over a long time ago.

    Obama 08

    July 30, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  5. A Woman In California For Obama

    Of course not. What else is news?

    July 30, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  6. CP


    Your polls mean nothing. The only that matters is the one taking place on Nov 4

    July 30, 2008 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  7. McCain is still Running?

    Remember just two months ago when we were fed daily that Clinton had a chance in the contest when the math did not add up, doesn't this McCain within striking distance sound familiar. Lets go state by state and see where the GOP stands.

    July 30, 2008 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  8. Tony, Miami

    I don't think the trip was to change the polls results but essentially to prove McCain and his supporters wrong about foreign policy and he did prove that he is better than Mcwhatever.

    July 30, 2008 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  9. Stephina

    Obama's trip was a complete waste of tax dollars. Because he took 2 Democratic Senators along with him and they stated they were on "a"fact finding mission", the trip was paid by US Tax Payers.

    McCain in 2008

    July 30, 2008 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  10. Bill in DC

    These polls don't mean anything. Of course Obama's trip overseas will be an immense help to him.

    The problem with these polls is that they don't reflect the new wave of voters planning to vote in November.

    These polls only attract the same old tired respondents. The model/method for polling needs to change.

    July 30, 2008 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  11. v

    mccain definition of success will never exist for he defines success by level of security not levels of balance...the war will be a lost cause as well as the lives of the soldiers who dies in action as what it seems to be coming from mccain..the surge of militray combative presence is invetiablty reality in decreasing violence but is far from balance ..this only temporary fix to the problem not pernamt stabilty to growing country

    July 30, 2008 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  12. Mike from L.A.

    It's ok, if it didn't change polls. What it shows is that rest of the world is ready to love America again, that is if we do the right thing in electing Obama.

    July 30, 2008 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  13. BJGT

    While Obama gets foreign leaders on board and meets with important economic leaders, McCain launches ads that say he has no substance.

    July 30, 2008 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  14. older white woman in rural wa

    I think 'presumptuous' has become the new 'uppity' and CNN's stories on this issue (particularly the recent report on The Situation Room) show just what kind of network CNN has become. Fox Light. Pushing the McCain camp's talking points.

    July 30, 2008 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  15. Danel

    People are NOT ready to elect Obama. They'll find some ways to bring him down. Too bad.

    July 30, 2008 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  16. Nia Hussein- Phoenix, AZ

    I wasn't ment to...Only the media was spinning that story line

    July 30, 2008 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  17. Sean

    I am truly starting to question the polls that we've been seeing. Regardless of who you support, they just don't add up.

    July 30, 2008 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  18. Mary WA

    CNN : you focus on all the negitives about Obama's trip. When many pundits were saying positive things about it you choose to interview and report mostly the negitive responses. I'm not suprised the poll don't show an increase with your biased reporting.

    July 30, 2008 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  19. Doris,Memphis,TN

    Oh yes it did! The trip showed Americans what a great President
    Obama would be and how much he is loved around the world. It
    also made John McCain, Tucker Bounds, and Carly Fiorina a


    July 30, 2008 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  20. Do it yourself

    Maybe someone should tell Barack that Gemans aren't registered voters!

    July 30, 2008 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  21. Jim

    Man, I thought after shooting two hoops and spending close to four hours "on the ground", this trip would have been a game-changer...I mean, what else could he possibly do to demonstrate he is ready to lead us to where we need to be – to not live in despair, but joy, with cloudless skies and Asian, Black, Whites and all folks holding hands and becoming the America we have envisioned for all these years, where everyone gets a fair chance and no one has to suffer the inequities of life...really, what else does he have to do?

    July 30, 2008 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  22. MikenMississippi

    The polls probably reflect the idea that Hillary is not even being considered for the Vice President. Obama had better wake up and see the division lines forming if Hillary is not the VP choice! We Hillary supporters are watching and waiting on this decision before we make our final decision. McCain is looking better and better by the hour!

    July 30, 2008 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  23. ricky

    Well the media been whining all week why obama hasn't hit the 50 point mark well hopfully this will shut them up....

    July 30, 2008 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  24. Rick in Az

    These McCain-iacs are starting to scare me. Most Americans are disgusted with the way this country has been run for the last 7 1/2 years but these McCain-iacs seem to be falling for the same kind of campaining that put us where we are at now. Here is Arizona Obama is still leading McInsane in the latest poll and Obama also out raised McCrazy in donations (McLunatic's donations came from corporations and Obama's came from the Citizens in Arizona). The GREAT John McCain that alot of republicans are posting about is not the same McCain that a lot of us Az know. We are suffering the same problems as the rest of the country and McCain seems to not even be able to show up to vote in the senate. Showing the Citizens of Az that his Presidential race is more important than our problems. I'm sure this won't get posted but, thought CNN and the McCain-iacs would at least concider how he is viewed in the state he represents..

    July 30, 2008 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  25. Billy. LA

    There's new stuff coming out on Michelle-should cause quite a stir.

    July 30, 2008 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18