September 22nd, 2008
02:00 PM ET
10 years ago

Race could play big role in election, poll suggests

A poll finds a small percentage of voters said they may turn away from Sen. Barack Obama because of his race.

A poll finds a small percentage of voters said they may turn away from Sen. Barack Obama because of his race.

(CNN) - A new study that surveyed racial attitudes suggests that racial prejudices could tip the balance in the coming presidential election.

If there were no racial prejudice among voters, Sen. Barack Obama would receive about 6 percentage points more support, according to an AP-Yahoo News poll, designed in partnership with Stanford University.

The results suggest that 40 percent of white Americans hold at least a partly negative view toward blacks, including more than a third of white Democrats and independents. A small percentage of voters - 2.5 percent of those surveyed - said they may turn away from Obama because of his race.

Though Obama is of mixed race - his mother was white, his father black - he is generally identified as black.

Full story

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain • Polls
soundoff (544 Responses)
  1. Suzie

    As long as Obama bleeds red, I could care less what the color of his skin is.

    This is one middle aged white woman voting for Obama because he will be a great president and will move this country forward.

    September 22, 2008 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  2. NoMcSame

    The white women are worse that the white men with that stuff. Look at how many of them jumped on the Palin wagon without even knowing her. It's like, Oh white woman me too, I can relate to her. How sad that in this time we still have to deal with the stupidity of people. They say things like Obama went to Harvard so that makes him uppity so I don't like him. That negros teeth looks better than mine, what is the world coming to and my trailer can fit in his backyard, oh my Lord. McSame is more like me in color anyway. FOOLS is what you are. McSame will take us all down and have us crash and burn just like he did.

    September 22, 2008 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  3. Reese

    Oh please...with the racial lines. It's getting old. Obama doesn't even care about black people. He cares about feeding his ego and the media is the breast.

    Let's look at it this way:

    If there were no racial diversions Obama would be receiving about 1% of the black vote instead of 98%.

    September 22, 2008 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  4. Dan , TX

    Has anyone noticed that when CNN does a "fact" check no McCain the conclusion is partly misleading or not true and when they "fact" check Obama it is true or partly misleading.

    McCain's campaign is lying every day. We need to reject this politics and reject McCain. This is about changing politics and America. We can send this message.

    September 22, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  5. Anonymous

    I believe it is wrong to not vote for someone because of race, but I also believe that it's wrong to vote for someone because of their race. And it think it's terrible that by default Obama is getting all of the black vote.

    McCain 08

    September 22, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  6. Independent Fred

    I'm going to put faith in the American people to not let fear or stereotypes determine guide their vote.

    One thing I find funny is there's no emphasis that he's *GASP* HALF WHITE...Why is he always presented as the first "Black Presidential candadate?"

    I wonder how much of this hoopla is spurred on by the media?
    This man win or loose is a example of how far things have come in America.

    September 22, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  7. MD, TX

    Here we go again. OBAMA PLAYING THE RACE CARD. The Republicans don't play it. HIllary didn't play it. Only Obama plays the race card.

    Apparently his ONLY qualification and reason for running for President is that he is black. Well sorry, that is not good enough. If Colin Powell were running, I would vote for him. If Juan Williams were running I would vote even for him.

    Obama is not only black, he is a racist. Be prepared America, if he loses it will be "because we are not ready for a black president".

    However, if he loses it will be because we are not ready for an idiot president.

    September 22, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  8. Brian, NJ

    I have a relative who basically admitted he would never vote to elect a black man President. Luckily my kids were not in the room. Very sad.

    Anyway, for those who are against the buyout, I know it sucks, but it is needed. The amount paid for in taxes will be far less than the losses in 401(k)'s and housing values if we let the financial system collapse.

    Of course the US just became a borderline communist country over the weekend, no walls or statues pulled down.

    Russian Navy on its way to Venezuala. Iraq and now the financial bailout straining our financial system. Watch out for how Russia plays this.

    September 22, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  9. Just Human

    Why all this about skin color. Why can't humans just see past it and into the person? Oh, that's right, they were TAUGHT to think that way. How sad...

    September 22, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  10. Jay T.

    I'm prejudiced against ignorant, incompetent, corrupt politicians. That is why I would never vote for a ticket that had the name Palin on it.

    September 22, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  11. kescia

    Give the "experience" thing a rest. The founding fathers set forth the qualifications for president–period.

    September 22, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  12. 12 year old Bir-racial Boy

    Everyday I tell my parents, I don't see race. They are 40 and 46. They told me that not all people are like that. They are always telling to do my best in school. I can't get anything lower B+'s on my report card.
    I want to be an enviormental engineer after college.

    After reading this article, I am afraid that people will still dislike me they way they dislike Sen Obama.

    My mom sometimes calls me Sen. Obama because I take so long to answer questions. (like him)

    Will people just not like me because I'm Bir-racial like Sen. Obama?

    September 22, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  13. Y

    Anyone who would admit that they would not vote for someone because of their race should not be allowed to vote because they are not truly American.

    September 22, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  14. PJ, New York Independent

    Deb, Allentown, PA , you said:

    And before a McCain supporter says something stupid, like "all black people are voting for Obama so that makes up the votes Obama will lose" let me point out that Kerry received over 90% of the black vote in 2004. African-Americans generally vote for Democratic principles more than they vote for color.
    Deb in Allentown, PA... let me point out to you that you're right about blacks voting Democrat/voting for Kerry in 2004. Now here's a FACT CHECK for you: you conveniently left out the fact that during the primaries the blacks on average were voting 94% for Obama, over Clinton. Can you explain that??

    Anyone can call me a racist all they want but I am NOT voting for Obama, no way!

    September 22, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  15. Trysh, Los Angeles

    I have to admit...I am entertained at the epiphany this has been for white people. We have said all this time that racism IS still a factor, but until THEY did a survey and THEY got whites to say, it was considered manufactured or imagined.

    September 22, 2008 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  16. George in Indianapolis




    September 22, 2008 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  17. John in Ohio

    Just because you oppose Obama doesn't mean you're a racist.

    But if you agree with all of his political positions, all of his social program propositions, if you are more in agreement with Democrat policies then Republican policies and you're not voting for Obama because you "just don't trust him", then yeah, you're a racist.

    If you disagree with the ideas Obama has put forth, that doesn't mean you're a racist, but it does mean you aren't using race as the deciding factor. Same goes for if you agree with Obama and you're voting for him, you might be a racist anyway. But if you agree with Obama, disagree with McCain, and you're not voting for Obama? Racism.


    September 22, 2008 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  18. Open Your 3rd Eye




    September 22, 2008 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  19. truth is ...

    not voting for Obama CANNOT be considered racist... If Obama is biracial, that means that anyone voting against Obama is also voting against a person that is 1/2 white. Unless you're all saying that Obama is more black than white!

    September 22, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  20. Laura, Boston

    It is getting sickening to keep hearing that if someone doesn't vote for Obama it has/must be due to racism. Not everything is about race.

    I have heard people say that they won't vote for McCain because he is old and senile. This too is a bias. McCain, when you think about it has a double whammy because he has Palin as his running mate. Sexism...another bias!

    I have also read on this blog and others that if Obama loses that we will see a race war like we have never seen before! Well if that is the kind of people Obama has supporting him...they will revote rather than congratulate the winners, than I do not want Obama to win! Obama supporters have been very spiteful and hateful first to Hillary now to McCain.

    May the best man win.....whoever does will be better than GWB!!! Isn't that what's important.

    Laura, Boston, MA

    September 22, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  21. 38 year old

    When are republicans going to realize that not all Americans are as gullible and stupid as their nominees? The part that amazes me the most is how they can turn a blind eye to facts and lie with straight faces. And the media does not even seem to care. If I was a fortune 500 company owner or what ever other type of people vote republican, I would be insulted at the nominees that the republicans have been presenting over the last few terms. Pallin's daughter is pregnant by someone different than the person that they want us to believe it is. McCain knows nothing about finances or reform. He has organized crime ties and gambling habits. I agree with David Chapel: “The stakes are too high in the Whitehouse for this!" From a boozer to a looser! Is this all the republicans have to offer? Surely they don't honestly think these two people, Frick & Frack, can run our country.

    September 22, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  22. Linda31

    Decisions by the Secretary pursuant to the authority of this Act are non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency.

    Just a piece of the language in the $700B bail out. So if you are voting based on the color of someone's skin, just remember the color of the dollar doesn't match anyone's skin.

    September 22, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  23. Tainopower

    Suggesting that if you are white and don’t vote for obama in one way or another that you are racist is wrong . What about the black people in this country if they don’t vote for McCain are they racist to? It not about his color its about is ideals and the lack of experience and his judgment.

    September 22, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  24. Oregon calling

    That's what they want you to think. They don't want you to vote in your best interests so they will keep the Race card out there. WAKE UP AMERICA!!!!!!! Vote for the intelligent guy this time.

    Obama / Biden 08

    September 22, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  25. Stephina

    This is all just more media hype. It is like the media can't accept the fact that there chosen candidate is not going to win, so they have fabricate that it must be because of racism.

    Simply put, I am NOT voting for Obama because he lacks experience. I do not feel that he would be a strong leader when dealing with the Islamic countries, China, N. Korea and Russia.

    If the Democrats had really wanted to win the election they would have nominated Hillary Clinton. I guess that party is truly not only sexist but incredibly stupid. Can say "shoot yourself in the foot" (LOL)

    McCain 2008
    Clinton or Romney in 2012

    September 22, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22