July 30th, 2008
04:13 PM ET
12 years ago

Poll shows Obama's trip didn't change race

Obama's trip abroad did little to alter the presidential race.

Obama's trip abroad did little to alter the presidential race.

(CNN) - It was a weeklong trip that drew blanket media coverage and sharp criticism from Republicans, but Barack Obama's recent tour abroad did little to alter the standing of the presidential race, a new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll shows.

According to the survey - the first national poll conducted entirely after the Democratic presidential candidate's trip to Iraq, Afghanistan, the Middle East, and Europe - the race for the White House has remained virtually unchanged since late June, with Obama holding a 51-44 percent edge over Sen. John McCain. In a similar poll conducted one month ago, Obama held a 5-point lead over the senator from Arizona , 50-45 percent.

The CNN poll of polls, an average of several recent national surveys, tells the same story - a single-digit lead for Obama (48-45 percent) that keeps McCain within easy striking distance of his Democratic rival with less than 100 days before voters weigh in at the polls.

The new survey also suggests the trip - carefully designed to burnish Obama's foreign policy credentials - did little to alter voters' perceptions of how the Illinois senator would handle national security issues.

"Did Obama's trip help his standing with the public on foreign policy issues? Not really," CNN Polling Director Keating Holland said. "Obama has not picked up any ground against McCain on foreign issues and some 52 percent think McCain would do a better job than Obama on the war in Iraq - virtually the same number who felt that way in April."

The poll also shows the presumptive Republican presidential nominee has an edge on terrorism, Iran, Afghanistan and the Middle East - in fact, every foreign policy and national security issue addressed tilts toward McCain. (Terrorism, Afghanistan, Iraq, Middle East, Iran, and Immigration.)

But in what is good news for Obama, the poll suggests few of the McCain campaign's criticisms of the trip have stuck - especially charges Obama was presumptuously acting as if he had already won the election, and claims he nixed a visit with injured troops because members of the media could not accompany him.

Instead, more than two-thirds of voters surveyed said the trip was appropriate for a presidential candidate, and 72 percent think Obama cares abut veterans and the troops currently in Iraq.

Full story

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain • Polls
soundoff (429 Responses)
  1. Not McDrain

    I don't believe the polls anymore. This political season has been a boon to the cable news networks. They'll keep stirring the pot so we think it's close. Yeah, I know we got Dubya twice but this race is over and it's been over for a long time.
    Vote Hope!!!

    July 30, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  2. Anna, Atlanta

    Agreed, Lisa.
    its a landslide with Hillary on the ticket.

    Actually Brian, it might have helped Obama if he visited the wounded troops, not just those who were healthy enough to pose for pictures!
    Its documented. he could not have planned the trip without the permission of the Pentagon, and he had permission if no cameras.

    That was a Goof that made no sense, and those cameras he took to Europe could not stop there. They had to follow him to the gym instead. NICE impression!

    there was one cameraman following McCain around in th States: he didnt see any goofs.

    July 30, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  3. mmd

    CNN who are you polling, lou Dobbs and Dana Bash. Poor Mcsame thinks the war is in Flagstaff. Give me a break, what has Mcsame done or said of an factual sustance lately that has to do with anything that involves the 21th century. He is sad, and the only reason that anybody could have any faith in his saneness of ability is because you and other news org. cover up for him. God help us if he gets in office.

    July 30, 2008 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  4. Debby, NJ

    Duh,Didn't Obama say this ?

    July 30, 2008 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  5. Me Here

    Lisa, wake up. Hillary doesn't even want to be VP.

    Study the issues and make your vote based on those, not because you're still upset over something that's been over and done with for quite some time now. Even Hillary is supporting Barack, why won't you?

    July 30, 2008 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  6. vic nashville,Tn

    Thanks to CBS,NBC and abc

    July 30, 2008 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  7. aaa

    it shows world loves him and it will effect

    July 30, 2008 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  8. Priscilla for Obama

    It doesn't matter what the poles show, Obama has shown that he can govern our country. We believe in you Obama and America is ready for change. Yes We Can!!!

    July 30, 2008 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  9. deroy

    there are too many questions about obama. he seems unsafe and very inexperienced.

    what on his resume prepares him for president?

    July 30, 2008 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  10. Dani

    how is 51-44 close?

    July 30, 2008 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  11. sue calgary

    Polls mean nothing! The true question is whether Americans are ready for an African American President. A lot of people don't want to voice this opinion beacause it may not be " politically correct" and there are those who would like to believe that the "race issue" is almost a non-issue" in America. Well, this will be the clear test of where America stands today on race. It is glaring to me at least that Obama is the better candidate- more dynamic, better ideas, fresh ideas, obviously not perfect but a lot more to offer both domestically and internationally than McCain will ever have! Forget about the polls. November will tell the story.
    The eyes of the world are watching!

    July 30, 2008 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  12. GERRY


    July 30, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  13. obama is unfit to be president of this country

    obama is a disgrace.

    July 30, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  14. Aunt

    CNN Keeps The Same Old Story Line. Ok We heard this hundreds of times!
    Bored CNN.

    July 30, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  15. Phil Newton Murphy, Oregon

    It's the economy, stupid.

    OBAMA 08

    July 30, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  16. RJ, CA

    Surprise, surprise!

    The AOl Straw Poll – REAL people voting REALTIME: July-21-28: 211,993 total votes cast: , McCain 66%, Obama 34%!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Work - Succeed - Be Happy!

    July 30, 2008 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  17. steve

    For those of you who think the media is attacking Obama you're dead wrong. He receives more positive media attention than any current politician I can recall. CNN won't print this.

    July 30, 2008 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  18. AK in LA

    Sorry to break the news, but almost half of the people in the US do not want Obama and want to vote for McCain. Obama supporters should come out of denial. He's got to convince the undecided voters to vote for him. Plain and simple. He just hasn't and in my opinion (including myself) hasn't tried. My advice is stop spending so much time blogging here and blaming the pollsters and get out and work for the vote. A Democratic victory is just not a sure thing this year.

    July 30, 2008 08:34 pm at 8:34 pm |
  19. Tennisguypitt

    Polls don't mean anything, CNN.

    Wait until November, please.

    July 30, 2008 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  20. PUMA 4 HILL

    Why would it change the race? Obama is ACTING as if he's the symbol of CHANGE and of America's Hope. I've been saying all along.... no beef on his buns.

    Where's the Beef Obama?

    July 30, 2008 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  21. Scott L

    Obama is learning that Americans are not stupid. Parlor tricks and waving his hand every time he speaks won't win him the presidency. Mark my words Dems, you have made a fatal mistake anointing him. Superdelegates may still override this arrogant loser.

    July 30, 2008 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  22. TheTruthHurts

    And it shouldn't change the race. Whatever idiots who thought he would go over there and make a fool of himself had to be a small subset of voters. I'm hopeful that people will study the candidates, the needs of this country and make a choice.

    McCain 2000 would have made an interesting choice. McCain 2008 makes this too easy in my book.

    July 30, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  23. Carolyn

    The polls are nothing but biased media – who spend their life bashing Sen. Obama. The p ublic won't forget what the media has done or the organizations who own them.

    July 30, 2008 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  24. bj

    To voice of reason:
    I think you may be surprised at how many people support McCain and don't support Obama. It's not politically correct to speak out in public against Obama because he's "black", but over the phone, or particularly in a voting booth people are going to vote their conscsious
    and that means disaster for Obama.

    July 30, 2008 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  25. Monica for Obama in Indiana

    Who cares everyone knows polls lie.

    CNN, why didn't you write and show the nice song that was written for Senator Kennedy.

    July 30, 2008 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
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