May 14th, 2008
12:55 PM ET
15 years ago

Poll shows both Clinton and Obama beating McCain

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="McCain trails both Democrats in a new poll."] (CNN) - While exit polls from the West Virginia primary seemed to suggest the party is deeply divided between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, a new poll out Wednesday suggests either candidate would easily beat Republican John McCain in the fall.

According to a new Quinnipiac University poll, both Democratic candidates beat McCain by a gap well outside the margin of error. Obama beats McCain by 7 points in the poll, 47 percent to 40 percent, while Hillary Clinton bests the Arizona senator by 5 points, 46 percent to 41 percent.

The poll carries a margin of error of plus or minus 2.4 points and was conducted from May 8-12.

Clinton and Obama's relatively strong standing against McCain in the poll appear to dispel notions that Democratic party may be unable to come together around one candidate in the fall, even as West Virginia exit polls reported majorities of both candidates' supporters would not support the other candidate in the general election.

soundoff (273 Responses)
  1. Brian from Fort Mill, S.C.


    I'm sorry to disappoint you, but blacks don't vote Republican because Republicans don't give a f#&!*& about us.

    Remember, during George Bush's first five years he refused to meet with the NAACP even once. All other presidents met with them at least once a year. We get the feeling that they hate us just as much as we hate them.

    That's why you should hear alarm bells when G.W. Bush got as much black support as Hillary is, and she's a DEMOCRAT. That's a hint and a half for her. She needs to stop harping on Obama's 40% white vote, and get to work on her 8% black vote. And don't blame the voters for being racist. She played the race card, not the voters!

    May 14, 2008 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  2. Unity

    Please stop the bickering. Both beat MCain in current polls. Both stand to gain or lose ground should they be nominated, so the polls are a snapshot. Alaska, and Idaho may be red states, but Hawaii, Washington DC (which went 90% Kerry last election) are not, and Kansas is not necessarily a red state, and Obama won by more than 70% there. What's more WV is not necessarily red or blue either. But in the end, does it matter if they are "red" or "blue"? Can't we see past that? Isn't i possible that we might be surprised and see more "blue" than we think? Maybe . . . if we unite. Furthermore no more calling Clinton washed up (her campaign is still going), a liar ,or any sexist name AND no more calling Obama an empty suit, an elitist (this label doesn't make much sense considering he is the poorest of the candidates and just finished off paying his loans from school a few years ago), or anything racially charged.
    If we could only see the humanity of the other candidate and their supporters we would be a lot better off. their humanity? Yes. When we make the others "just an empty suit" or "just a sore loser" etc. we take away some of their humanity. We limit them to our narrow thinking. This is not helpful. Obama supporters are guilty AND Clinton supporters are guilty. Obama supporters say mean things AND Clinton supporters say mean things. I don't want to read that one side is hateful and rude and the other isn't because if you objectively read any of this strings of comments it is not true.
    Please, come together. We have more in common than we do different, and "a house divided against itself cannot stand," so let's stand together.
    (POST THIS CNN, I am sick and tired of you only posting the most divisive and mean-spirited of blogger's comments)

    May 14, 2008 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  3. Voter

    To FLORIDA: But Obama did outspend Clinton in WV 2 to 1 on advertising, offices, staff, etc.

    May 14, 2008 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  4. Carter

    I believe we would all agree that despite the fact that WV reflects HRC core backers if Obama did campaign there HRC would have a much smaller margin. Maybe by 10-15%.

    Now would be a really good time for HRC to bow out gracefully on a really high note and starting rallying behind Obama so that we will take white house in a convincing manner come November.

    May 14, 2008 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  5. Jim

    By law Hillery has got to stay in and fight past June 3rd in order to be able to collect the 11 mil from her supporters that she owes herself. The Clintons are dedicated only to themselves.....

    May 14, 2008 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  6. Kenneth M

    If Obama can beat McCain without her why would he want Slick Hilie on his ticket? One can only imagin the trouble Bill will cause once back in the white house. Then Obama would have to spend much of his time in office defending himself from stuff Bill did. The Clinton well is tainted. Time for a new start.

    May 14, 2008 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  7. As A New York Voter ...

    as a New Yorker who worked to get Clinton elected (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:egan, OWCH
    she has lost me and my friends for ever. And we are all white women in our sixties (her demographic) who have worked hard for the demodcratic party all our lives.

    We are disgusted at the way she has ran her campaign and her divisive tactics. She has done more to set back race relations in this country since there were dixicrats.

    She should be ashamed of herself, she has no shame. The only reason she is where she is because of her husband.

    She had every advantage, name recognition, her husband, money, the party machine, and with all of that Obama beats her

    May 14, 2008 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  8. Brian in Knoxville, TN

    And if Presidents of the United States were elected by popular vote, this poll would mean something. The Democratic Party's nomination process is flawed because it tries to be fair rather than focus on which candidate can win the Electoral College votes needed to win the White House.
    Obama fans can keep pushing, but they're only going to take us all over the brink into the abyss if he becomes our candidate.
    The only way that the Democratic Party could nominate Obama now is by a total failure of leadership. All automatic delegates–those who are uncommitted and those who are committed to the weaker general election candidate–have to have the courage to do what they were given the power to do according to the rules of the Party's nomination process. They have make Hillary Clinton the nominee of the Democratic Party and they have to make voters understand that winning the White House is more important than half the voters' infatuation with a candidate whom they barely know.
    Let me put it another way:
    Younger Democrats dutifully voted for Gore and Kerry in 2000 and 2004, only to watch George W. Bush take the White House with a weaker message. And he did it not once, but twice.
    Before that, older Democrats dutifully voted for McGovern ('72), Carter ('80), Mondale ('84), and Dukakis ('88), only to watch one Republican after another take the White House.
    Obama isn't something new. He is the same old story for the Democratic Party, with one exception: at least all the ones who lost before him had the experience to run a national campaign and the experience to be President of the United States.
    This will be the last straw. We Democrats have a great shot at finally winning the White House again. But if the Democratic Party wants to role the dice with an unknown candidate who, in addition to having a thin resume, is (as one leading Clinton supporter put it) bait for an October surprise, then the Party will lose the support of many lifelong, rank-and-file Democrats (including this one).
    Clinton for President of the United States of America '08!

    May 14, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  9. Sad

    People are saying some older hardworking non educated whites will not vote for Obama in the General Election. The funny thing is the hard working non-educated/educated black people, since the beginning of time had to the vote for the less of two evils and always supported the democratic Nominee no matter how bad we thought he was (anything was better than a republican in office). Now that we have the presumptive Nominee (Obama) and because you may or may not like him because race or whatever the case maybe; will decide not to vote or vote for McCain. Well my comment to you is: when YOU put McCain into office, I don't want to hear once complaint about the gas prices are continuing to rise, health care is to expensive, the war that is still going on in Iraq, the education system is mess, college is too expensive. YOU GET WHAT YOU DESERVE BY THE DECESION YOU MADE!!!

    Obama or Hillary 08' anything better than McCain

    May 14, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  10. Linda. Boston, MA

    "This poll is not figuring in that democrats will cross over and vote republican if their candidate isn't the nominee."

    Umm, YES, it is. This is a general election poll, meaning they are polling people regardless of party affiliation. Which either means that most of those "I won't vote for Obama" Hillary supporters are full of sh**, or it means that Obama has enough support even without those voters to beat McCain. Either way, this DOES factor the supposedly "bitter crossovers" into the final numbers. And the final numbers say OBAMA BEATS MCCAIN. Deal with it.

    May 14, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  11. John Doe

    What a waste of a poll. McCain already beat himself by being born in Panama. Even if he won the election, he would never be allowed to take the oath, unless of course the Supreme Court rules that non-natural-born-citizen military officers with stays of over 30 days in the Hanoi Hilton Garden Inn are immune from the rules of the Constitution. Heck, not even the State Dept. considers McCain a natural-born citizen!

    May 14, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  12. Lindalee

    I think that the three most far left liberal areas of the country (East coast, West coast, and Chicago) have stars in their eyes if they believe that the moderate doemocrats will be voting for Barak Obama in the fall. I personally see Hillary Clinton as a more moderate democrat, and could not change my vote to someone that has chosen to surround himself with crazy pastors for twenty years, and also taken full advantage of the far, far left liberal "educated" professors and former terrorists, having in his own words, "chosen his friends carefully". Typical politician, in the very worst way, especially since he is running on the platform of being different. I will be writing in Hillary in the fall if the superdelgates cannot read an electoral college map.

    May 14, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  13. Roger

    Dj, I would have never thought that the black guy behind Hillary was a crackhead. Is this your depiction of African Americans?

    May 14, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  14. Duh!!!!

    Is it really a new developement that HRC won WV.. I think that was known over 6 months ago. Two more SD for our man...I mean who really cares about WV anyway....5 electoral votes...give me a break...If they want to they can vote for McBush and continue to be one of the poorest and least educated states...

    May 14, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  15. CJ

    hey rick in Florida- When's the last time you were in Washington DC???? "Has everyone forgotten that Barack has won FIVE primaries with 74% (or more) of the vote, and in mostly WHITE states?? Recap: WashingtonDC 75%, " Re-check your supposed "white states", DC is not even close to being a "white state"... and being from Maryland I would know! That's the best laugh Ive had all primary season!

    May 14, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  16. Chris

    The only state that HRC is winning is the state of denial.

    No way will she be VP – Obama wouldn't even make the inauguration before he had an "accident"

    Time to get out of the way – Hillary is irrelevant.

    Obama '08

    May 14, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  17. sophia nyc

    War OR Peace..

    It's an easy choice.

    May 14, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  18. right source

    CNN, let's be realistic here. I can run for the presidential campaign and beat McCain. You guys are missing the big picture. American is in a desperate need of change, can't you see that. Read some of the articles that you print.

    May 14, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  19. Lou-Dallas

    ...why is it that any poll taken by cnn or nbc seems to always show either demowaco Blah Blah or Billary being able to defeat McCain? Other polls that I have seen or read seem to state otherwise. Hey, here's a suggestion, why don't the two of these characters draw straws or something, and the loser stays with the democrats and the other goes off to form their own party could happen...!!!

    May 14, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  20. mike

    Latest News update: Obama seeks all black ticket. Obama is strongly leaning towards choosing black person for democratic VP if he is nominee. How do you feel about this?

    May 14, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  21. Judy

    If that is the case then I don't think Hillary should be on the ticket.

    May 14, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  22. Ron L

    Obama will WIN by about 10%.

    Hilary is HISTORY...

    In my opinion Hillary has eliminated herself by her behavoir during the campaign. She has been for things in the beginning, then against them 2 months later, she has OUTRIGHT LIED, she has implied Obama is an elitist when SHE KNOWS he is not, she POINT BLANK said while herself and McCain bring experience, Obama only brings a SPEECH!! She then propose the GAS TAX HOLIDAY...knowing it was more harmful that helpful!!

    And the sad thing is I THOUGHT she was BETTER THAN THIS!!

    Hillary is an OLD-SCHOOL, CRASH and BURN Liar Politician. She is the Past, Obama is the FUTURE.

    AMERICA needs a fresh start..this can not include Hillary!!

    May 14, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  23. KD

    Punisher: Obama only one 1 primary by over 70%. The rest were caucuses.

    May 14, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
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