July 30th, 2008
04:13 PM ET
6 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. An American

    Dear Media,

    It is too early to tell yet.

    Signed,
    Don't Jump the Guns

    July 30, 2008 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  2. A Nightingale Sings in Berkley Square

    Obama is still going to stomp McSame. McSame can't even offer any ideas of his own, all he does is try and destroy Obama's character and steal his ideas. "100 years in Iraq, oops I mean 16 months. Am i getting enough fiber and what happened to Matlock? What were we talking about"

    July 30, 2008 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  3. jen

    Actually 51-44 is not "virtually" the same as 50-45. When McCain gains 2 points you always say "McCain closes gap". Truly the media has a different standard for Obama, and it is the media that is keeping McCain in the race. Anyone who has said that Obama gets better press then McCain is kidding themselves. I do not know if the different standard set for Obama is because he is less known, or if it is simply a case of institutional racism.....

    July 30, 2008 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  4. Sgt. Dan

    Obama's skipping the wounded soilders in Germany because he couldn't have his meida paparazzi with him was a BIG turn off for me..

    July 30, 2008 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  5. McCain's digs Platform Flip-Flops

    This is the WORST time of year to gauge anything with polls because of travel, etc. All of the media knows this. Must be a REALLY SLOW news day. Next month we should have a much better indication.

    Thing is – It really bothers me that cell phones are not represented as they should be within these polls. Take it with a lot of grains of salt!

    July 30, 2008 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  6. JA Cook

    What really irks me to see a candidate using wounded troops for political gain. it's time to stop that sort of politicking.

    Mr McCain – being a veteran doesn't make you a champion of veterans, neither do your votes.

    And it sure isn't something that gives you the right to politicize the wounded – which you sir are doing in your ads.

    July 30, 2008 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  7. joe

    Obama,britney,paris- mccain ad got it right. We tried an inexperienced celebrity in Bush 2.We can't afford to do it no moreEven with all the experienced people like poweel,cheney,rummy he messed up.
    So i urge all the people who loves our country to vote Mccain.
    Obam ,paris,britney.

    July 30, 2008 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  8. Abby

    Obama holding a 51-44 percent edge over Sen. John McCain. He only needs to win by 1.

    July 30, 2008 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  9. PAT

    SHAME ON YOU MCSAME, YOU THOUGHT THIS WAS GOING TO HURT OBAMA OH YOU WERE SO WRONG FOOL

    SHAME ON YOU OLD MAN, SHAME ON YOU..

    July 30, 2008 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  10. Dani

    Best headline EVER!!

    July 30, 2008 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  11. Paul Dobro

    Too bad presidents are not elected based national polls, it is the electoral college. Based on state polloing, Obama has over 270 in the strong or leaning Obama, that puts him over without a single swing state.

    And that is not far enough ahead to be called an early blowout the GOP is looking for?

    Trust me, the Obama team is not going to stop until Nov 5th. News if all good for Obama, and it can only get better.

    July 30, 2008 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  12. Votr

    Obama says "…this country that I love" when he and his wife openly despise everything this country has been and stands for, why then should we trust that his message of "hope" is more than one word and liberal politics at it's deceptive best. For the past 7+ years this country has finally stood for the principles and constitution on which it was created. Obama's dramatic move to embrace socialism and marxism, "hoping" to turn this country into a communist state is no stellar example of "America returning to our best traditions". Obama has made it crystal clear that arrogant elitism (the few with some power will make all decisions for the poor peons of the populace) as well as large government ineptly controlling every facet of our lives where we have to ask permission and have "papers" to do most everything is his vision of America – and we will pay and pay for this with higher taxes.

    July 30, 2008 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  13. al

    **********************************

    THE PEOPLE WHO GOES TO THIS POLLS ARE THE ACTIVE/VOCAL PARTY AFFILIATED SUPPORTERS.

    THE VAST QUIET MAJORITY OF NON-AFFILIATED VOTERS WOULD SHOW UP AND DECIDE FOR THE BEST CANDIDATE WHEN ITS TIME COME NOVEMBER.

    DON'T BE SURPRISE, ITS GOING TO BE A LANDSLIDE FOR OBAMA.

    STOP THE POLLS
    STOP THE MADNESS. VOTE OBAMA.

    July 30, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  14. Moses

    The impact of Obama's trip will best be felt after people have digested and internalised it. It just might be premature to conclude that it didn't have any impact on people. We'll see.

    OBAMA '08

    July 30, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  15. Vegas Barbie for Obama

    Of course the criticisms of the McCain camp would not stick: McCain criticized Obama for not having made such a trip; Obama then made the trip, and made a fantastic showing as a candidate for the job for which he is applying, and McCain couldn't handle how well Obama did, so he had to criticize him for THAT. IMO, by this point, little of what McCain says about Obama is going to stick, especially given that it seems all McCain KNOWS how to do is criticize Mr. Obama...not a wonder most of McCain's prattle is falling on deaf ears by this point...we are listening to our future President, Obama!
    OBAMA '08 & '12–YES WE CAN!!!

    July 30, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  16. Rise America Rise

    Obama was right on the 16 month timetable, which McCain now supports.

    Obama was right on talking to Iran, which the Bush administration is now doing.

    Obama was right on going after Al Queda//Taliban in Pakistan, which our Army is now doing.

    Obama was right on shifting more troops into Afganistan, where Al Queda/Taliban are getting stronger and bolder and killing more of our troops.

    His judgement is spot on every step of the way, and McCain/Bush are out of touch ... what does it take for the American people to recognize this?

    July 30, 2008 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  17. Jason - Chandler, Arizona

    All those in favor of WW3 please show your hand.. . That's exactly what you'll be getting if you elect John "I know how to win wars" McCain.. He has an itchy trigger finger because of his time as a POW.. He has a lot of rage built up. Why do you think there are so many reports from his fellow GOPers about his rage and blowups..

    McCain is wrong on offshore drilling. He wants a few extra billions in the bank for big Oil rather than a solution to a long term problem. Another point is that it will cost us 2-3 times more to recoup the lost revenues from his gas tax holiday for the highway fund which the 18 cents per gallon gives us. McCain should reach out and say were going to invest in Ethanol based on Sugar Cane.. Brazil does it, over 40% of their cars run on the stuff and its clean burning, for you GOPers (Goofy Old People) party thats Zero Emissions. Cleaner air, better for the environment, Something you GOPers dont care about..

    We need to get off of oil all together. There are plenty of places to grow Sugar Cane.. like for example The Gulf Coast, Florida, Tobacco Road (lets stop subsidizing tobacco growers, then turning around and suing them and the cigarette makers for producing a harmful product) and instead have them grow Sugar Cane.. Less products are made with Sugar Cane, than compared to that of Corn.. SUGAR CANE IN 2008!!

    Oh you Hill supporters, SHE LOST fair and square, Yet SHE wanted to break the rules and get the states that broke the rules. She and YOU need to move on and support Obama or DONT vote ever again!!. Fair is Fair!!

    July 30, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  18. scooter

    If anything I would think he went down after the trip. (most of who I hear in the Barber chair say that he lost there vote during the trip) many thought it was a trip to learn something about what was going on over their and instead it seemed like all he did was get photo opt and tell people about himself (his favorite topic )

    July 30, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  19. MaryJo Bruce Surprise, Ariz

    Obama should of visited the troops when in Germany. He didn't because he didn't have the camerman and all the entrouage with him thats why. Hes getting himself in so deep. Why can't people see it.
    The media are the once holding him up in the sky. Why doesn't he want to debate McCain. One of his comments he said he had visited maybe 56,57 states. Hummm! last time I heard there were 50. Also talking about Pearlharbor. Said something bombing there. Hummm! no bombs but lost of other fire power. He just does not get it out most of the time right. Not occasionaly, but often, too often. This guy will NOT be ready at 3 in the morning when that phone rings. He can' t talk his way out of everything he will have to make a decision. And, my purse if empty of money now and he wants to raise taxes. He wants Americans to be speaking spanish instead of the spanish taking English lessons. Like, Hello the universal language is English. Its like hes from another planet. Talking loud saying nothing.

    July 30, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  20. Mb

    Good News – It didn't hurt , Bad News – It didn't help now. I think it show up later to have been more advantageous than the polls reflect now.

    July 30, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  21. ClintonDems4Cynthia08

    Rapper Ludacris releases pro Obama tirade that includes calling Clinton vulgar names!! See it on youtube!

    July 30, 2008 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  22. JV

    "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.)"

    Amusing since all McCain and Bush have done lately is shift position on these issues to be identical to one's Obama has been advocating all year.

    July 30, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  23. The Canadian

    Oh my, McWalkingCane is really going to be upset now...all his trash talking and negative campaign ads have done NOTHING to affect Obama beating him in the surveys and polls.

    Looks like the maximum spending budget of his might get used up while Obama saves the best for last!

    Canadians for Obama '08!

    July 30, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  24. Sane John

    And people say CNN has a liberal bias. Hilarious.

    July 30, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  25. Texas trail puppy!

    Hopefully neither will "Race" change the race!!!!.....

    July 30, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18