September 9th, 2008
08:00 PM ET
10 years ago

Is Palin influencing white women?

More white women support McCain-Palin than Obama-Biden.

More white women support McCain-Palin than Obama-Biden.

(CNN) - Did John McCain's selection of Sarah Palin as his running mate cause a major shift of white women toward the Republican presidential ticket?

Not according to the latest CNN/Opinion Research Corporation polls.

The pick of Palin, the first female Republican VP candidate, was designed in part to lure women voters to the GOP ticket, with McCain aides hoping a significant proportion of that voting bloc would identify with Palin's working-mom credentials.

But in a CNN/ORC survey released Monday, McCain drew 56 percent of support from registered white women - a statistically insignificant 3 points more than his support among that demographic in the week before he picked Palin as his VP.

Read full poll results [PDF]

"In CNN/Opinion Research Corporation polls, Barack Obama was losing white women before the conventions, and he's losing them now," CNN Polling Director Keating Holland said. "His problems with this important voting bloc didn't start when Sarah Palin joined the GOP ticket."

These numbers appear to contradict findings from a recently released Washington Post/ABC News poll that suggested the Arizona senator gained 20 points among white women after Palin joined the ticket and prompted several stories of the Illinois senator's new problem with this key demographic.

But the CNN/ORC poll indicates McCain is even more popular among white women than Palin is (69 vs. 65 percent approval) - evidence his support among that demographic may be attributed to his own appeal, not Palin's. Obama and Joe Biden are also popular with white women, though not to quite the same degree: 58 percent said they held a favorable view of Obama while 55 percent said the same of Biden in the latest poll.

"White women have a favorable view of Sarah Palin, but they have a favorable view of Barack Obama and Joe Biden as well," Holland said.

White women have been a key voting bloc in several recent elections, though their support has not always proved decisive. Al Gore won the popular vote while losing among white women in 2000, and Bill Clinton captured the White House in 1992 while managing only a tie with former President George H.W. Bush.

But in 2004 President Bush carried 55 percent of the white women vote, and 52 percent of women overall - a key reason he won his bid for a second term.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Extra • John McCain • Sarah Palin
soundoff (231 Responses)
  1. Ina

    Unfortunately the pumas are voting based on their emotions. I was a Hillary but when she lost and she did lose fair and square I switched over to Obama. The pumas and other people supporting McCain/Palin need to take the time to find out what these candidates stand for and from what I have seen they do not stand for much. If Obama loses he can afford McCain benefits for rich people however many of the people who voted against him will still be complaining how the country is going in the wrong direction and they can blame themselves for picking McCain/Palin.

    September 9, 2008 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  2. When the lipstick wears off!!

    When Sara Palins lipstick wears off us women, who haven't done our research, will see the true pitbull. Just read what the former Mayor of New York City – Ed Koch had to say about Palin.

    Direct quote:

    "Sara Palin is a plucky, exciting, candidate, but when her record is examined, she fails miserably with respect to her views on the domestic issues that are so important to the people of the U.S., and to me. Frankly, it would SCARE me if she were to succeed John McCain in the Presidency."


    September 9, 2008 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  3. Joe in StL

    It's not that Palin polls BETTER among men, it's that she polls WORSE among women.

    This is because women in this country are PRO-CHOICE, and they don't want Palin to be able to have any influence on Supreme Court nominees.

    All people, women, men, old, young, black, white, and so on, VOTE for the constitutional law professor, Obama, and restore our faith in the constitution.

    September 9, 2008 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  4. The Truth

    "If the vice president were ever called on to lead the country, there is no question in my mind that the experience and demonstrated judgment of Joe Biden is superior to that of Sarah Palin. Sarah Palin is a plucky, exciting candidate, but when her record is examined, she fails miserably with respect to her views on the domestic issues that are so important to the people of the U.S., and to me. Frankly, it would scare me if she were to succeed John McCain in the presidency." -Ed Koch

    September 9, 2008 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  5. bumble bee

    Dear Women,
    Don't forget how the democratic leadership treated their first viable presidential candidate...they basically wanted her out. It is a small tent in the democratic party. Go McCain- Palin.

    September 9, 2008 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  6. McCain 08.12

    McCain never need Hillary supporters, he needed the religious right, which he now has. I am so sick of hearing about Hillary. We now will win regardless of who you pumas vote for so go home and bake some cookies. You have lost again.

    Palin rules.

    September 9, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  7. Independent Voter

    Palin is influencing THIS white woman to vote for Obama!

    September 9, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  8. american in canada

    this white woman will be voting for OBAMA! choose brains over lipstick

    September 9, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  9. Sarah L., Fayetteville, AR

    As a white woman, I am solidly for Obama. I honestly felt that the Palin pick was insulting and patronizing.

    I don't care about her kids or any of that nonsense, but I do care about her record and outright lies about the bridge to nowhere, the ebay jet etc...

    People need to stop acting like she's a China doll and ask some real questions. Good grief, isn't she supposed to be a pit bull with lipstick?

    September 9, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  10. Mike, Neb

    Mrs. Palin needs to be reminded that Jesus Christ was a community organizer and Pontius Pilate was a governor.

    September 9, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  11. Dready1Rasta

    By all means "white women" vote for McCain, But when he re-institutes the draft AS HE HAS STATED and you are forced to kiss Johnny good-bye to die in a foreign land at Mr.McCain's pleasure remember your actions on November 4th 2008, you were given an option and chose your son's, grandson's, or husband's fate. You will receive no sympathy here.

    September 9, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  12. Military Man

    Oh the liberal bloggers are out in force today!

    September 9, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  13. Connie

    I am a 64 year old white female and I do not support McSenile. I have six grandsons and if they want to enlist I will be behind them 100%, but I can not see them drafted and with McSenile they will be after he starts the next war.Senior citizens had better find out were he stands on social security, because your benefits will go down under McSenile and the age of retirement is going up for our children and he draws over 1900 dollars a month. I can not believe American women are the stupid , but I guess you learn something new every day.How has Bush's tax cut worked for us this last 8 years , hang on John McSenile promises more of the same.
    Connie from Indiana

    September 9, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  14. Sherri

    What does race have to do with this? As a white woman, I don't vote my race, gender or ethnicity. I vote for the very best person to represent my values and ideas. That is Barack Obama. Palin is an insult to me. She made it clear that not only does she hold very different values from mine, she will not respect my values. Do not insult white, black or any other color of human being by such inane quandaries. Go Obama! Palin Never!

    September 9, 2008 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  15. Griff

    They say? Whire Males? But time will tell. Women need a spoke-person in Government. How long will they have wait, to see this again?

    September 9, 2008 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  16. Joe Regis

    She is going to fade when people get to know where she stands. She is like Bush and Cheney and this is not what America is looking for at this moment. Not this time, not the same old same old.

    We want reform, we want change.

    Obama/Biden 08/12.

    September 9, 2008 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  17. SAT

    Another potential Palin rumor/scandal could be about to surface. A colleague forwarded a You Tube type video of a young AA teen male claiming he is the real father of Bristol Palin's baby. I have no idea if there is any truth to his allegation. It would seem only a matter of time before someone forwards this video to the MSM. It could be a hoax. While watching it, I did think when does all of this end. And for the record, I am a female.

    September 9, 2008 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  18. Yogi Bala

    Moms lost their childs in Iraq war, Moms lost their insurance in Bush government, Moms lost their jobs overseas due to lobbyist run Bush Government, Moms pay half their salary to gas due to Bush government tie up with Oil giants – The self interest government of BUSH made "THE SURVIVAL for life of major AMERICANS itself is at high RISK". I think people are not fools to burn their own life by voting to Mc Same and Palame

    September 9, 2008 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  19. george

    Sarah Palin is a totally self-centered & ruthless politician who takes lying to an art form. Believe the bull that the McCain-Plain camp is spewing if you want, but take it from an Alaskan, this woman is a disaster in progress. In an action reminiscent of her firing all the Wasilla city employees that disagreed with her, troopergate, etc, there is one thing the oil company controlled Palin campaign is doing a good job at keeping quiet..she is little by little moving the capital of Alaska to Anchorage/Wasilla...something she totally denied in her campaign for governor. This is with the full knowledge that doing this will destroy thousands of Juneau residents financially. Anyone who believes this woman is not a total puppet of big oil and greedy Alaskan business interests, needs to get a reality check!

    September 9, 2008 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  20. Ron L

    DUMB QUESTION of course she would have an influence. The REAL TEST is after 4 or 5 One on One interviews with TV anchors. EVERYBODY needs to take a DEEP BREATH and find out more about her views and positons on the SEVERAL seroius issues facing the country.

    September 9, 2008 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  21. Christine MI

    I agree that this election is about race. I am white and most of my former friends said that they would not vote for a black man. I can't stand intolerance and I am disgusted. Looks like I will be looking for new friends.....and possibly a move to Canada.

    September 9, 2008 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  22. A Real Feminist

    Correction: RACIST White Women who would rather support a white woman whose record proves she does not support equality for women than vote for a black man who does. Palin believes no abortions even if you're raped or the victim of incest. Plain believes creationism and not sex education should be taught in our schools.

    There shouldn't be one woman in the United States holding a sign with her name on it. This woman would have us squabbling over abortion rights and gay marriage for the next 4 to 8 years rather than preparing our children for a global economy and doing something about global warming. This woman wants this teenage pregnancy is "typical" in America while a kid from a modest home getting an ivy league education is something to scoff at. She is NO EXAMPLE FOR WOMEN–AT LEAST NOT IN THIS CENTURY.


    September 9, 2008 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |

    OBAMA BiDEN 08/12

    September 9, 2008 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  24. CFL

    To answer the Headline -- YES, and men also.
    Straight talk -- Don't believe the intranet smears, they're just that.

    September 9, 2008 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  25. Republican woman for Obama

    Palin has officially covinced me to vote for Obama. I have heard nothing but lies from day one. She said "thanks, but no thanks", my rear! What did she spend that $233 million on anyway? I can't fill my gas tank this week!!!! Her election will be mean huge set backs for women's rights and any hope for reform.

    Obama/Biden 08

    September 9, 2008 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
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