August 20th, 2008
09:23 AM ET
6 years ago

CNN poll of polls: Obama lead cut in half

A new CNN poll of polls shows Obama's lead is dwindling.
A new CNN poll of polls shows Obama's lead is dwindling.

(CNN) - In what could be an ominous sign for Barack Obama just days before he is formally named the Democratic presidential nominee, a new CNN poll of polls out Tuesday shows the Illinois senator's lead over John McCain has been cut in half in recent days.

According to CNN's average of several recent national surveys, Obama's lead is now a slim 3 points over the Arizona senator, 46-43 percent - half of his advantage in a CNN poll of polls one week ago, and down from a high of 8 points in mid-July.

Election Center: Check out CNN's electoral map

The latest poll results come amid increased attacks from McCain on Obama's readiness to be commander-in-chief and the re-emergence of national security worries among voters in the wake of the Georgia crisis.

“Over the last week, we’ve seen Sen. Obama’s lead in the poll of polls cut in half,” noted CNN Senior Political Researcher Alan Silverleib. “This change was likely driven by a renewed focus on foreign policy after Russia’s invasion of Georgia, as well as by Sen. McCain’s willingness to launch more aggressive attacks against Obama on issues such as off-shore drilling."

A Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll out Tuesday evening was the latest national survey to indicate Obama's lead is dwindling, putting the Illinois senator ahead of McCain by only 2 points, well within the poll's margin of error. The CNN Poll of polls also includes new surveys from Quinnipiac and Gallup.

But the recent downturn in the polls for Obama may not last - the Democratic White House hopeful is headed for a week of what is likely to be overwhelmingly postive coverage as he names his running mate and officially accepts his party's presidential nomination.

"The big question now is whether Obama can successfully regain control of the campaign agenda as we head into the Democratic convention," Silverleib also said.

soundoff (612 Responses)
  1. Ikenna

    Obama is up by 3%, and it is bad news for Obama, I wonder what kind of news it will be for Mccain as he is losing by 3%

    August 20, 2008 07:26 am at 7:26 am |
  2. Margaret

    Hillary could have won.
    This is a very old story. Woman does a great job, can clearly get the work done. Man talks a lot with little substance. Man gets promoted by the bosses. Man fails. Everyone blames the woman.

    August 20, 2008 07:26 am at 7:26 am |
  3. steve

    Without Clinton on the ticket, it will be hard for Obama going ahead to win. His recent lack of response on the Georgia crisis plus the effective attacks from the McCain camp will wear him down in the upcoming election.

    August 20, 2008 07:29 am at 7:29 am |
  4. proud army and navy mom

    Awsome......Now that is change we can believe in. To bad you didnt have your teleprompter Saturday night. HAHAH

    August 20, 2008 07:30 am at 7:30 am |
  5. proud army and navy mom

    Awesome......Now that is change we can believe in. To bad you didnt have your teleprompter Saturday night. HAHAH..

    August 20, 2008 07:30 am at 7:30 am |
  6. Dave

    How anyone could think of putting McCain in the White House after 8 years of the Bush administration is beyond me. Wake up people – Bush will leave this country in economic and financial ruin in 09...McCain has nothing new to offer, except that he can (I think) give a speech and make it seem like he understands how the English language works.

    August 20, 2008 07:30 am at 7:30 am |
  7. scooter

    thats Funny Mr United is showing how much he can divide a party that was a sure win this year.

    August 20, 2008 07:30 am at 7:30 am |
  8. Bette

    Looking on the outside (from Canada), it appears that with repeated Republican attacks by McCain which the US voter apparently likes instead of analyzing for what they are, they are going to vote in another inept president. They have the opportunity of voting a brilliant politician, an incredibly intelligent individual of high moral character and what could be one of their greatest presidents ever. If they choose the other, then we can only watch the US eventually slide into oblivion like so many great powers before it. What a pity.

    August 20, 2008 07:31 am at 7:31 am |
  9. Dianne

    Really? What a big surprise. Remember when everyone thought Hillary was being mean? This is exactly what we (Hillary supporters) were afraid would happen. Once somebody really started pointing out BHO's shortcomings, he would be unelectable. I am heartsick that people fell for him and now we will have four more years of this Republican nightmare.

    August 20, 2008 07:31 am at 7:31 am |
  10. Robert

    McCain's negative attacks have fooled a lot of people...but he is still ahead, as he should be. And once the Democratic Convention is over and Barack has his VP by his side...LOOK OUT John McCain. No matter who McCain picks for VP, with only negative campaigning in his arsenal, John McCain will lose by a LANDSLIDE in November. We the people will never knowingly choose an Adulterer and lair to be our President.

    August 20, 2008 07:32 am at 7:32 am |
  11. Mark G

    "But the recent downturn in the polls for Obama may not last — the Democratic White House hopeful is headed for a week of what is likely to be overwhelmingly postive coverage as he names his running mate and officially accepts his party's presidential nomination."

    Liberal MSM, trying to keep hope alive for BHO comeback. Saddleback threw BHO off the saddle, MSM trying to put him back on the horse.

    August 20, 2008 07:35 am at 7:35 am |
  12. Thomas

    In my opinion, one thing that is for certain is that this race will be a very close one. No landslides for anyone this year.

    August 20, 2008 07:37 am at 7:37 am |
  13. Ray

    While I will continue to support Obama, part of me welcomes a McCain win. If this country is actually stupid enough to consume another four years of the the sickening snake oil we have purchased for the last eight, then so be it.

    August 20, 2008 07:38 am at 7:38 am |
  14. staustin

    See we told you so, this is exactly the reason we should all vote for Hillary. She has the most experience as well the ability to get the job done. Vote for Hillary!

    August 20, 2008 07:39 am at 7:39 am |
  15. chas alabama

    I was going to vote for Obama, but he is going to far to the right, so I might as well go with McCain like everyone else, and continue down the path of destruction this country is on.
    More war, new draft, higher taxes to pay for it all.
    And this time the draft will include females.

    August 20, 2008 07:40 am at 7:40 am |
  16. For Change

    Obama...You got this election in the bag. Just stay positive and keep preaching your message for change. McWar is happy with the current direction that America is going....foreclosures, record gas prices,weak economy, the pathetic "No Child Left Behind Act", War in Iraq....

    August 20, 2008 07:40 am at 7:40 am |
  17. Ticket Killer

    Of course they are cut in half.
    Obama is a celebrity.
    Obama is an empty suit.
    Obama has an interest in seeing improvement in the Black community
    Obama isn't old enough to have fought in the Vietnam War
    Obama wants to tax people appropriately so the government doesn't go broke paying its interest bill to China which uses the money to build the stongest army on Earth.
    Obama is so wrong for us.

    August 20, 2008 07:41 am at 7:41 am |
  18. Bruce

    Who would want to be exposed to this constant attack on everything they do or say? Out right lies are put forth as gospel, and time and money is wasted trying to defend against the untruths. Both parties are to blame, but the more I study the attack adds it is clear to see that one is more to blame than the other.

    The vast majority of the posting on the blogs here are just HATE mail. No back up just empty accusations. Repeating the same lies over and over does not make them any truer. They only prove that the person repeating them does not care about truth they are so caught up in their own private world of “IT HAS TO BE MY WAY”. It is clear that most of them have adopted the concept of don’t confuse me with the FACTS I have my MIND MADE UP.

    The ridicules ranting and raving, the name calling and total disregard for each other and those that are running for public office that I read here only shows that the founding fathers of this GREAT NATION knew all too well that the general population was not to be trusted to make wise and proper decisions. That is why the USA is not a democracy. They chose to form a Republic to prevent the type of bickering that is going on today from disturbing the ship of state.

    August 20, 2008 07:41 am at 7:41 am |
  19. Steve

    CNN, I know you really want to post a story and a lot of people will click this link and discuss it, but have you learned nothing of how flawed polling can be from when they were so wrong during the NH primary. But I guess all you want is content. Now you can speculate on the reasons for these numbers and what it means. Figure out what you want to go with as the new "story" of the campaign.

    August 20, 2008 07:42 am at 7:42 am |
  20. EMT

    The smoke is clearing, and the mirrors are cracking....

    August 20, 2008 07:42 am at 7:42 am |
  21. Matt

    Obama peaked too soon.

    August 20, 2008 07:44 am at 7:44 am |
  22. Hawkeye

    News worthy??? Would there be any political news if they told the truth. Obama by a landside, just is not interesting. Keep it up drive by media and Lush Dumbaugh. Maybe you all were appointed by God/

    August 20, 2008 07:44 am at 7:44 am |
  23. My View

    All of these numbers are within the margin of error for the polls. The numbers are NOT changing. Why doesn;t CNN get someone who knows a little bit about statistics to actually report on this and not some fool who is only interested in "big news" headlines.

    August 20, 2008 07:46 am at 7:46 am |
  24. Vet in S.A.

    Maybe people are finally looking into what Barack is really about. McCain is not much better, but better.

    August 20, 2008 07:47 am at 7:47 am |
  25. Scott, West Chester, OH

    The Saddleback appearances had to give a boost to McCain, especially among evangelical voters. He did an outstanding job while Obama looked tentative and weak.

    August 20, 2008 07:48 am at 7:48 am |
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