September 22nd, 2008
02:00 PM ET
6 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.

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

    RACE is this race is one thing but THEFT (again) !!

    CNN PLEASE post!

    The story is all over Progressive Talk Radio today about the McCain campaign sending absentee ballot applications to registered democrats or people that have donated to Obama's campaign. These ballots are deliberately misleading and have postage paid return addresses that are for an election clerk that is outside of your city or town. What this will end up doing is either having your vote not counted, or if you return one of these, they will cite you for election fraud, saying that you already voted absentee. These ballots are only being sent out in 'purple states' and this is a big deal.. This is called voter caging, and is a huge problem.

    The McCain campaign is stealing this election as we speak. Please get this information out to as many people as you can ,and tell anyone you know who has received one of these ballots that they need to contact their city election clerk or the supervisor of elections immediately. Also call the local media and let them know what is going on.

    The main stream media is never going to cover this so we have to depend on our ground campaign to get the word out to our voters.

    You can NOT do this to us again Repugs!

    scs

    September 22, 2008 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  2. ATLian

    This is the only way McSame will win.

    September 22, 2008 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  3. Don't Kiss America's Chance Away because of RACE

    As a 45 year old White Female voter I urge anyone out there that would base this Presidential Race on Race, not to....

    This years Presidential Race is about the 2 Wars and the possiblity of even more, The Economy, HealthCare and so much more.

    If we make the wrong decision we don't have the opportunity to take it back instead we will have to try and survive another 4 years that could take us, God knows where it would take us!

    September 22, 2008 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  4. OBAMA SUPPORTER IN IOWA

    Obama has worked so hard to keep the race issue out of this contest. Shame on you, CNN, for constantly reminding us that racism is alive and well (sick) in USA. Let's stick to the issues!!!!! Landslide for Obama/Biden on 11/4. Who's with me?

    September 22, 2008 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  5. Unmoved Democrat

    I knew this would happen. We're in the final stretch, Obama is ahead, so what can the media do to keep drama stirred up? I know: let's throw race/ethnicity back out into the arena and focus on it as much as possible to make sure ignorance remains at the forefront of the race! Forget the issues. The biggest issue is skin color. Give me a break!

    Please post this CNN!

    September 22, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  6. Patriot

    Isn't this story old? You're pulling it out again, CNN, why?
    Race is only an issue if you make it one!

    September 22, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  7. Obama- Next Stop.. White House

    Without question it plays a role....

    BUT>>>>IT>>>>WONT>>>>EFFECT>>>>THE >>>>OUTCOME

    President Obama ....... I like the way that sounds!!!

    Barack Your Vote!!!!

    September 22, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  8. Race card time

    Race is having a role- to advantage Obama.

    Obama rode his race and the historic nature of his campaign to steal the nomination of the democratic party.

    Many democrats will NOT forget how he played the race card to trounce the better qualified democrat out of the game.

    September 22, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  9. Ken

    An equally engaging headline could be: "Stupidity could play a big role in election". The latest stupidity comes directly from the McCain campaign which is asking for a "symmetry of coverage" from the press. Oh please! This is just more pathetic whining from the [R]ight as the truth comes out and reporters start to do their jobs so we don't step into [R] deception so easily. [R]s think that unless media outlets act like FOX and bias their reporting to the [R]ight, they are not balanced.

    "Symmetry of coverage"? This is the ultimate backstabbing deception being foisted on our press and ultimately on our country. True conservatives will recognize this for what it is: a form of political correctness which posits that the press equalize coverage, in the sense that no matter how dumb one campaign behaves the press MUST report both campaigns as dumb, or just not report the dumbness in the first place. And I ask you, which one of our current campaigns would benefit from this current attempt at social engineering, which campaign is calling for this socialism of ideas? I'll give you a hint: its comes from the same party that loves to privatize profits, but socialize losses - from the same party which resorts to calling the other party 'socialists' because they themselves suffer from a bankruptcy of ideas. The stark irony is that people who like to be labeled 'conservative' and like to wear flag lapel pins are the very people who end up endorsing this brand of fascist socialism.

    September 22, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  10. John in NJ

    So sad...for our country if race does play a deciding role in this election. America deserves the smarter leader and so what if he has a tan?

    Obama/Biden in 08!

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

    Since when was this new news? We all know this, but thankfully young people aren't as racially prejudice as the older generation. But believe me, it goes both ways. There are black folks who are racially prejudice towards white folks. It's nowhere near equal because even if the percentages are equal, the hard number are still way less due to blacks being a minority.
    The good news is, most racial prejudice are localized by state and isn't proportionate across the board. So it shouldn't hurt either candidate much.

    September 22, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  12. Charles I Am

    Ghandi said "if the world could see the Christ of christians it would receive him but instead it sees the christians of Christ and rejects him". If black people are inferior then God is a liar because the bible says that we (mankind) are fearfully and wonderfully made, in His image.

    September 22, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  13. darko

    Race is definately an issue...getting 95% of the vote from one race is breathtaking.

    September 22, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  14. Jesse from Berlin

    That`s very sad.....judging from what we face, it´s pity to vote for someone because of their race..... I thought it´s all about the issues... why don´t we just vote black or white? at least we don´t have to go through all of this..

    September 22, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  15. Sarah.....and my last name isn't Palin!

    Wake up America! Iowa gets it. Iowa proved you wrong.

    I love Iowa.

    Obama/Biden

    September 22, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  16. Sherri

    How sad...how extremely sad. It's the 21st century. It is time to open your minds people. Fear and distrust of someone because of the color of their skin is not an American value.

    September 22, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  17. Right to left

    Time for the media to play the race card to advantage Obama.

    Sexism is the evil- not racism.

    Haven't you all watched the coverage of the Obama vs all the nasty coverage of the women in the campaigns?

    September 22, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  18. Joe Regis

    Marin Luter King and a lot of our funding fathers would be very sad at this state of affairs.

    As if the republicans did not screw up things enough.

    America will make history and move the country in a new direction with Obama/Biden.

    September 22, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  19. Independent

    He will have to beat it if he hopes to win...U heard him on 60min yesterday...This is all a wash. People choose to vote for different reasons that sometimes have nothing to do with the issues. So to win he has to bring enough support on his side regardless of why these supporters are voting for him (or not for him).

    it sucks that he would be in a much stronger position if he was white but...he's not! The times are that he has the chance as a black man to actually win this. So I hope a little longer.

    September 22, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  20. Gary Chandler in Canada

    A CNN show, ‘World of Challenges’ featured 5 former Secretaries of State. By demographics and polls it was SHOWN that the people of the World have a low level of respect for America. When asked how America could improve in the eyes of the World, NOT ONE of the 5 came up with the obvious answer. They made lame comments like, ‘get all the countries in the world together’ ‘be the leader in global warming’. Do they NOT get it? The world does NOT think of or want America to be the World Leader; the question was how you regain the morale high ground and stature in the world?
    Declare a Standards War in America!!!
    *9 trillion in debt going to 11 trillion to China and Russia *Number 1 in crime rate amongst developed countries * # 20 in education and dropping * 12 in UN HDI and dropping * terrible ethnic, cultural, gender divisions
    If you want World Respect, endeavor to be a ROLE MODEL, which you are NOT!
    Fix your OWN house. Russia is recovering from collapse; America has spiraled into it. The odds of America recovering with McCain is ZERO, (Georgia attacked Ossetia first, the Splurge money is NOT working) and SLIM with Obama. (Obama would need YOUR help!)
    Over your heads, he has often said education is the first step. That is the glimmer of hope; become smart!! . CARE about the 3 million Iraqis who have been killed since BUSH invaded in 1991! Do NOT let McCain make you believe the Georgians had a good reason for their night time, surprise attack on peace keepers and civilians. (if you do, I have a wmd I can sell you and a bridge to nowhere)
    When you have the messiest yard on the block, don’t tell others their lawns need mowing!!!

    September 22, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  21. hurriCAIN PALIN

    If there were no racial prejudice among voters, Sen. Barack Obama

    would receive about 6 percentage points more support.

    haha, not much of a jump. shows people picking experience over

    good speeches and a one time 'good judgement'

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

    obama can outrun mccain anyday! this is a dum article.

    September 22, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  23. Lorna, NY

    I am not surprised. Some Americans, because of their racism, would rather elect an idiot than someone who is intelligent and would be a great president. When will we judge people by their abilities and not the color of their skin???

    September 22, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  24. Female Voter

    Most of those people polled seem to forget that his mother was a white woman, but...what ever. Can't please everyone!

    September 22, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  25. Justin from CT

    Blue states need to form their own nation. It would be vastly superior to the rest of the crap left over in America.

    September 22, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
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