February 27th, 2008
11:54 AM ET
14 years ago

Poll: McCain's hard to beat


A new poll out Wednesday suggests McCain will be difficult to beat in November. (Getty Images)

WASHINGTON (CNN) - A new poll out Wednesday suggests Sen. John McCain, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, will be a difficult candidate for the eventual Democratic nominee to beat in a general election match up this fall.

According to a just released Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll, McCain would be in tight races with either of the remaining Democratic presidential candidates.

McCain is statistically tied with Sen. Barack Obama, 44 percent to 42 percent, and ahead of Sen. Hillary Clinton by 6 points, 46 percent to 40 percent. The poll's margin of error was plus-or-minus 3 percentage points.

The poll also showed McCain with a 61 percent approval rating, a number higher than both Clinton's and Obama's in past polls. (A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll earlier this month measured Clinton's approval rating at 52 percent and Obama's at 58 percent.)

The Arizona senator holds a clear advantage on dealing with the war in Iraq, according to the poll, and holds a 9 point advantage on economic issues over Obama, despite having acknowledged that area is not his expertise. Though the poll finds voters favor Clinton by 10 points over McCain to handle the economy.

The same poll also showed Obama with a 6 point edge over Clinton nationally - a finding that's consistent with several other polls out earlier this week that indicate that the senator from Illinois is the frontrunner in the Democratic race.

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

soundoff (499 Responses)
  1. Tom

    Clinton supporters are about as absurd and irrational as her campaign has been recently. If your candidate loses you will go sulk and vote for Mccain? What kind of non-sense is that?

    February 27, 2008 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  2. Will

    Joe: ZOMG!!!! A bossy and arrogant First Lady? We could NEVER survive such a thing as a nation!

    Brian in Tampa: You're four years too early for Dukakis (he was the nominee in '88). And you know what happened in the '84 election? The party nominated the safe establishment candidate, Mondale, and he probably should have been the first major party candidate to win zero electoral votes in history. If Nancy Reagan hadn't been so irrationally concerned about losing California that she forced the campaign to pull resources out of Minnesota, Reagan may very well have had a 50 state sweep that year.

    So yes, by all means, let's nominate the safe establishment candidate yet again. Worked really well four years ago too, right?

    February 27, 2008 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  3. Will

    Give war a chance, Vote McCain.

    February 27, 2008 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  4. Ann

    I am a Democrat and I have never, ever voted Repulican in my life. However, if Obama is the nominee, McCain has got my vote.

    February 27, 2008 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  5. Stavy

    McCain is friends with the Bushes and they are pulling for him to win so that he can continue their war and oil riches! Shame on any democrat who will vote for mccain, you are destroying the future of this country. mccain is on his last leg, what does he care, he has lived a full life. Get back to your senses and vote democratic. Enough is enough with this stupidity, keep your egos in check Hill supporters.

    February 27, 2008 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  6. D.

    I support Hillary, but if she doesn't get the nominee, I'll definitely vote for Obama. I am a Democrat.

    February 27, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  7. Oy

    "As a democrat I rather vote for McCain than for Mr. Xerox."

    Clearly you meant as a Republican.

    February 27, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  8. keithjonesblog

    Very encouraging to see some reasonable people that actually look at the issues and see that Obama is nothing but an empty suit reading from a teleprompter.

    Unfortunately for conservatives, McCain really is a moderate, even more so than G.W. Bush.

    In the general election this will be good.

    I say McCain takes it.

    February 27, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  9. Stephen A

    I can't believe all you Clinton supporters that are saying you will vote for McCain if Obama gets the Nomination. Clinton and Obama pretty much agree on every issue. And the few things they don't agree on really aren't that improtant. So if you really support Clinton and then vote for McCain in the general election, then you are just a sore loser. This isn't a personality contest, it's about issues.

    February 27, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  10. Will

    Hillary backers are saying that they will vote for McCain over Obama.... just goes to show that they are as divisive as she is!

    Hopefully they will actually be loyal to the Democratic party and help Obama defeat McCain when it matters

    February 27, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  11. Frank, San Diego

    Noted Republican Joe Scarborough seems to think that a big democratic victory is inevitable regardless of who the Democrats nominate. Wonder why?

    Perhaps it's because all of the head to head polls show McCain topping out at about 46%. When you add to that the fact that likely voter models have been wrong (under estimating Democratic turnout) virtually all year, you have the makings for a Democratic landslide.

    It's Scarborough's view that the Republican hierarchy know this, and they are just fine with McCain (whom they dislike) as the blood sacrifice.

    And maybe that's why Romney gave up so gracefully. He must have decided that the Republican nomination in 2008 wasn't going to be worth much.

    February 27, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  12. Camping Bryan

    Even Barack Obama is going to vote for McCain in the general elections if Obama gets nominated. It's the hip thing to do now.

    February 27, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  13. Rob L.

    Now is the time to close your eyes and picture the economy and the wars effect on this country after four more years of Republican rule (Not a pretty picture!).
    Now take a deep breath and try again to form the same picture after four years of change and work to unite this country and improve this countries image and economy with the war over and our country prospering once again. There...you've just pictured what a Democratic President like Obama could do for the US of A.

    February 27, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  14. Lenny

    It will be a good race between Obama and McCain. I will probably be voting for Obama. Of course I am in one of those red states that don't matter to the Clintons.

    February 27, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  15. Eye Opener

    This is sad!
    This poll result shows that America has not learned her lesson and therefore deserves the government that she gets. After almost eight years of failure and failed policies under a republican administration, having another republican lead in the polls is indicative of the lack of political maturirty and blind party loyalty of the american voter.
    We need to seriously look at the country's problems and decide who is best suited to bring about meaningful change, provide solutions and turn this country around.

    February 27, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  16. Nicole

    I think the biggest concern for democrats with these new poll numbers should be that Obama's negatives are unknown at this point. His negatives are still very low, during a general election this is bound to change. How much this number changes will be key to his ability to win the November election. The republicans will be much tougher on him in the general, compared to the primary election. While it is trure that Hillary has high negative in comparison, they do not change. I think that this is something to think about in these last few days of the primary election.

    February 27, 2008 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |

    Your oppoenent's oppenent is not your friend...

    Voting for McCain becuase Hillary loses the nomination shows your stupidity why you were supporting her in the first place.

    McCain is a fine candidate, and has a strong record. But what this nation needs a new direction- old politics and politicians will not cut it anymore..

    February 27, 2008 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  18. pst

    The Republicans don't have anyone to vote for, Johh McClain is not a true Repuplican, he is just the best Democrat.

    February 27, 2008 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  19. Amused in NY

    Is anyone else amused by all the Clinton supporters who say they'll vote for McCain over Obama? And they say Obama followers are the cult members! It looks to me like there's one for Hillary as well: The Temper Tantrum Cult.

    In your logic, none of Senator Clinton's policies mean anything to you. Do you think McCain will go for universal healthcare, a very democratic policy –something Clinton, herself, said. Or perhaps you'd like to see a war in Iraq last for another hundred years. Or maybe you'd rather see someone who has no idea how to help our nation's economy. She has also used the banner of change during her campaign, so I suppose another old white guy in the White House is something unprecedented.

    February 27, 2008 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  20. Waleska

    Dukakis and Kerry both had HUGE leads at this point in the game and we all know how that ended.

    McCain will lose to either Democrat - he's running on the Bush agenda.

    February 27, 2008 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  21. Matt

    I find this new poll interesting. Romney dropped out saying that he wanted the Repulican Party to come together and focus on the general election. At that time polls showed that McCain would likely beat Clinton, but lose to Obama. Now McCain's position is gaining strength while Obama and Clinton weaken each other.

    Clinton is VERY polarizing. Most people love her or hate her with no middle ground. Republicans can't stand her and many Obama supporters feel the same way about her. As she cranks up the attacks to feed her hunger for power, she only weakens further the chances for a Democrat to be elected in the general election.

    Hillary, we already know what you are about. We are tired of the power hungry, divisive politics. It's time for you and Bill to stop the power grab. Let us move on and examine the records of McCain and Obama.

    February 27, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  22. Yamaka

    If Barack Hussein gets the Nomination, MCain will win the WH with 60% votes. It is suicidal for the Democrats, because BHO is a lightweight – an inexperienced Manchurain Candidate , a Trojan Horse tsent by a rich media tycoon to divide and kill the Democratic Party. Cheers.

    February 27, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  23. J

    To all Hillary lovers...SHE's DONE.

    Get over it.

    Now that Obama has beat the infamous Clinton political machine it's time to put the smack down on McCain.

    Yes we can.

    February 27, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  24. Mark-Natalia Texas

    I'm a Democrat and will vote for McCain if Obama wins the nomination. Come on people Obama has you all fooled. I told people the same thing about Bush a long time ago; when he ran against Ann Richards. I just have a gut feeling about things and am usually right...wait and see.

    February 27, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  25. sam lowery

    I see the Freeper Trolls have hit this site hard. Go ahead a vote for McCain and watch this country go bankrupt with his 100 years war. A 100 year war will kill our Democracy and guess who wins? Here is a hint, not "We the People".

    February 27, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
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