September 3rd, 2008
04:10 PM ET
10 years ago

CNN Poll: Obama widening lead in battleground states

Obama is up in key battleground states.

Obama is up in key battleground states.

ST. PAUL, Minnesota (CNN) - A new poll suggests that Barack Obama is widening his lead over John McCain in two battleground states but indicates the race is dead even in Ohio, the state that decided the last presidential election.

In a CNN/Time/Opinion Research Corp. survey out Wednesday afternoon, 55 percent of Iowa registered voters who were questioned said that Obama, D-Illinois, is their choice for president, with 40 percent backing McCain, R-Arizona.

That’s more than double the lead that Obama had in a University of Iowa poll taken early last month.

"Obama is winning in all regions of the state - even in the western counties where George W. Bush beat John Kerry by 17 points," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Obama is winning rural voters in Iowa - not something you see in many other states."

Iowa’s caucuses kicked off the presidential primary season and launched Obama towards the Democratic presidential nomination.

“Iowa was Barack Obama's breakthrough state,” CNN Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider said. “He won the Democratic caucuses with a powerful organization. John McCain barely competed in the Iowa Republican caucuses. He came in fourth. Obama retains a strong organization in Iowa, where McCain is just beginning to get started.”

It appears to be a similar story here in Minnesota, where the Republicans are holding their national convention this week.

The poll indicates that Obama has a 12-point lead over McCain, 53 percent to 41 percent. That’s up slightly from a 10-point lead Obama held in a Humphrey Institute survey taken last month.

"It's important to note that today's polls don't reflect any boost McCain might get from the GOP convention, because nearly all the interviews were done before the festivites started in Saint Paul," Holland said. "This could be Obama's high-water mark in those states."

It looks like a very different story in Ohio, which has 20 electoral votes up for grabs.

President Bush’s narrow victory in Ohio four years ago clinched his reelection. It looks like it could be just as tight this time around in Ohio. The poll suggests he has a 2-point lead over McCain, 47 percent to 45 percent, which is a virtual tie when taking into account the survey’s 3.5 percentage-point sampling error.

So why’s Ohio different that Iowa and Minnesota?

“In Iowa and Minnesota, white voters are backing Obama,” Schneider said. “In Ohio, white voters are supporting McCain. What about those blue-collar white voters that were so important for Clinton in Ohio? They're pretty solidly for McCain.”

The CNN/Time/Opinion Research Corp. poll was taken August 31-September 2, with 828 registered votes in Iowa, 742 registered voters in Minnesota, and 685 registered voters in Ohio questioned by telephone.

soundoff (295 Responses)
  1. Sandy

    The shock of Palin will fade and Obama will rise up even higher.

    September 3, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  2. The Lady

    Obama/Biden 08

    September 3, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  3. Kelby from Houston, TX

    HOO RAY! Even though your polls mean nothing to me...NOTHING!!! It's alays good to know. By the way. The support around Barack Obama is tangible, you can feel it. You can hear it when people talk about politics you can see it in the front yards of citizens all across America. It's because of the evident support that Barack Obama has that I don't believe your polls. I believe a bus load of people who express their belief in Barack Obama just because they over heard my conversation.

    September 3, 2008 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  4. PUMA moving on...

    I'm surprised about Rural Iowa supporting him. I live in Des Moines and the rural communities are largely evangical communities.

    September 3, 2008 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  5. pat C.


    September 3, 2008 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  6. cnn junkie

    i smell landslide.
    obama/biden 08

    September 3, 2008 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  7. Poor Comsumer

    Ohio will change it tune before Nov and get on the Obama change train because no one wants to vote for a loser and criminals that think they are above the law. Don't put to much faith in polls

    September 3, 2008 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  8. Tim, Seattle

    See ya MaGoo. Its Obama's to lose now. Keep it steady and we will have Obama as our next president.
    Look at tye electotral map. MaGoo is almost finished.

    Obama/Biden 08'

    September 3, 2008 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  9. Lucieann

    Apparently the hypocrisy of the Republicans has folks paying attention to who they truly are~And we are not about to be fooled again!

    September 3, 2008 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  10. Dem Folks

    Media, please be fair to both candidates.

    As immigrants from a communist country, I HATE TO SEE UNFAIR COVERAGE to any of the candidates – fist to Hillary, then to John McCain.

    That's not the fairness we expect from News Media !!! How can we be united under such unfairness !

    September 3, 2008 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  11. Hillary 2012

    Who care about this these polls now
    Any thing will happened with in 60 days

    We learn the lessons form 2000 and 2004

    Hillary 2012
    Mc Cain/Palin2008

    September 3, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  12. Ted

    No way, no how, no McCain

    September 3, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  13. Democrat for John McCain

    We are going to vote for John McCain so these polls have no meaning. American people are not fools to vote for Barack who is inexperienced and who has no issues. I know that CNN is pro-Obama and it showed last night when John McCain pulled the interview with Larry King. It is am insult for CNN media. I know that CNN will not publish my letter. Who cares? We all know what CNN is leaning towards.

    September 3, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  14. Obama 08

    John McCain is running the campaign of old (no pun intended) and Americans have become a lot smarter to the fear mongering, the scare tactics, and wedge issues.

    Republicans are the architects of the ownership model....when it comes to Americans, you're on your own!

    September 3, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  15. CR

    McCain is incapable of making decisions.

    I have interviewed for a job as a nonprofit program manager more than one time!!!

    September 3, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  16. Patriot

    Just wanted to make sure everybody had a chance to look at the facts . .
    B.A in political science from Columbia University, with a specialization in international relations
    J.D. in Law from Hardvard, graduated magna cum laude; President of the Harvard Law Review
    12 years (92-04) teaching constitutional law
    7 years State Senator: sponsored more than 800 bills
    4 years Senator for Illinos, a state with 12.8 million people

    Bachelor's in journalism from University of Idaho
    4 years Wasilla City Council (8000 people)
    6 years Wasilla mayor (8000 people)
    1 year "Ethics Commissioner of the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission"
    20 months governor of a state with 660,000 people

    *Oh you forgot about her commercial fishing experience that should really give her a bit of an advantage on foreign policy.

    I am sorry. I didn't know we aren't allowed to ask questions. Gracious, if all the information the McCain camp was putting out weren't so false. She is not a reformer – she gathered as much pork barrel spending as she could using a lobbyist. She was for the bridge to nowhere; she worked for Stevens 527, and had asked for another 200 million in pork barrel funding from Stevens before he was indicted. She has been governor of a state, that doesn't have a capitol building and whose legislature meets for only 90 days A YEAR! So tell me why we shouldn't wonder about the experience of this woman. As citizens, our vetting process is the CAMPAIGN TRAIL NOT THE VOTING BOOTH – that means asking questions!

    September 3, 2008 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  17. Kel in Auburn, AL

    Yeeah, buddy! Change is coming, whether you like it or not!

    Obama/Biden 08!

    September 3, 2008 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  18. Chip

    Polls do not equate to Electoral Votes!!!

    CNN is creating more hype.

    September 3, 2008 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  19. Kwaayesnama

    Sarah Pahin uses poor judgment and the GOP makes her out to be a hero!
    This election should not be about Sarah Pahin not having an abortion.
    This election should be about her not using the good judgment to use birth control.
    Any intelligent person knows that when you choose to have unprotected sex at 43
    you have a very high probability of having a child with Downs Syndrome.
    The republicans are making her out to be a hero because she used the bad
    judgment not to prevent the pregnancy in the first place.

    September 3, 2008 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  20. Elitist college graduate

    You know those Iowa farmers- they're all a bunch of latte-drinking elititst. That's why they're supporting Obama!

    September 3, 2008 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  21. Ben

    May god help Obama to become the next President. He is a good man and America and the world needs him Now!

    September 3, 2008 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  22. Foreign Observer

    taken before the convention but not before the palin pick, I take it? well, let's see what kind of speech they wrote for her... and whether they'll allow her to talk to the press.

    September 3, 2008 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  23. big T

    White Male Ohio – voting for Obama!!!

    September 3, 2008 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  24. ts

    It appears to be a similar story here in Minnesota, where the Republicans are holding their national convention this week.


    From what I was told a poll taken at the state fair in Minnesota had Obama with 58 percent. Oh and CNN the state fair closed on Monday.

    September 3, 2008 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  25. Robert

    No surprise Obama is winning in Iowa. McCain isn't a big advocate of biofuels. McCain is already behind in the electoral college and these two states will make winning the presidency even more difficult.

    September 3, 2008 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
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