July 31st, 2008
11:21 AM ET
14 years ago

McCain narrows Obama's lead in key states

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/31/art.mccainstate.gi.jpg caption="McCain has narrowed Obama's lead in three key states."]

(CNN) - Barack Obama and John McCain are statistically tied in Florida and Ohio while Obama holds a clear advantage in Pennsylvania, new Quinnipiac polls out of those crucial battleground states Thursday show.

But in what could be a warning sign for Obama as voters begin to turn their attention to the general election race, Obama's lead appears to have dwindled, or barely remained steady, in all three states, even as the Democratic presidential candidate has enjoyed a wave of intense media coverage surrounding his trip abroad.

CNN Election Center: View the latest state polls

In Florida, Obama now holds a statistically insignificant 2-point lead over McCain, 46-44 percent. In a similar poll taken one month ago, Obama held a wider, and statistically significant, 47-43 percent advantage over the Arizona senator there. The difference appears to be a shift among independent voters, who now support McCain in Florida by a 5-point margin. In the June poll, Obama held the advantage among the same group of voters by a 10-percent advantage.

CNN's Electoral Map: Check out the lay of the land

In Ohio, the battleground state where a weak economy should give Democrats an advantage, Obama is ahead by a 2-point margin, 46-44 percent. That lead, also statistically insignificant, is down from the 6-point advantage the Illinois senator held there one month ago.

Obama's lead has also narrowed in Pennsylvania, though he still enjoys a clear edge there. Obama now leads McCain by a 7-point advantage, 49-42 percent, down from the 11 point advantage he had in June.

The poll was conducted from July 23-29, in the midst of Obama's trip abroad, and carries a margin of error of just under 3 points in each state.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Florida • John McCain • Ohio • Pennsylvania • Popular Posts
soundoff (202 Responses)
  1. gotcha

    Give Obama enough rope and he hung himself!! Pride goeth before a fall. He is going down, and Senator McCain, my darling , is going to be our next President.

    The bloggers are ominously quiet today. Would you say they are beginning to smell the coffee?

    July 31, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  2. norml

    polls schmolls

    July 31, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  3. Mike

    Better Wake up Florida retirees. McBush has already spoken out against Social Security.

    July 31, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  4. Keir

    Two words: Energy Policy.

    July 31, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  5. Another grumpy old white woman for Obama

    Horse Puckey!
    Polls mean nothing and are manipulated by the media to keep us on edge. I have never been polled and know of nobody who has.
    The 2 times I was called by a poll taker I was told they only wanted to talk to the MALE voter of the household. When I told them he was not here (He was working) they hung up on me. Polls mean nothing at all.

    July 31, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  6. Danielson

    Until we start polling new registered voters, first time voters, and voters who exclusively use cellphones...there's no real news here.

    Though it does benefit news orgs to have a closer race from wire to wire, correct?

    I have faith in America, no matter how much that faith has been battered and tested these last 7 years of George Bush and an unabashedly corrupt administration. The choice we face is simple: Continue the policies of the last seven years...or not.

    If it's all workin' for you, vote McCain to keep things the same. If it isn't? You have a viable, qualified alternative in Barack Obama. It really is that simple, folks.

    July 31, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  7. maria

    america is just plain dumb or racist to but that sicko in the white house.

    obama 08,12

    July 31, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  8. Ted Williams

    How much advertising revenue from oil companies will CNN lose if Obama wins?

    July 31, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  9. McCain The Man

    Florida only matters for McCain.
    McCain can't win without it, but Obama doesn't need it to win.
    Since when wasn't Ohio a toss up.

    CNN is the worst a reading stats. Independents always vary because it all depends on the number you poll, because 75-80 of people that are considered "Independents", lean but just don't tell you. And Quinnipiac is not very good at spotting them.

    July 31, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  10. Tim

    I think people are starting to come to the realization that Obama may not have enough experience to be president. I think he's a great speaker, and has some good ideas on some issues. However, I also think he has a very poor understanding of other issues, and has made some subsequent missteps that he has repeatedly had to go back and correct.

    Would you turn over the reigns of a major company to a guy who had been working there for a year?? Obama is a one-term U.S. Senator, and I simply don't think he is ready to be leader of the free world. In contrast, McCain has a bounty of experience on both domestic and foreign policy issues. As well, contrary to what some on the left may think, I do not think that by virtue of being a Republican, McCain will simply be a continuation of the current Bush administration. History has shown the two to differ significantly on a number of issues that are important.

    July 31, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  11. Jonathan, Hartford, CT

    Well, what do you expect?!

    While John McCain was campaigning in every little town in the Midwest, Obama was campaigning in Europe. Why didn't someone tell the Obama campaign that the Europeans can't vote in our election? Jeepers!!!!!

    July 31, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  12. Change

    We are on vacation wait when we come back, yes when he was over seas never mationed that it is summer many of us are overseas too enjoying the sun what out Mc Saine we are coming back

    Nice try CNN and he still lead one point or twenty points is still a lead and a miss is a miss

    July 31, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  13. RyanD.

    "A study by the Center for Media and Public Affairs at George Mason University, which conservatives have always regarded as sympathetic, says the three broadcast networks have been more critical of Obama than of John McCain in their recent news coverage...when reporters offer opinions, 72 percent of those about Obama are negative–compared to 57 percent for McCain."

    July 31, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  14. Jill American

    Yup .. and the republican smear machine is going to keep chipping away and , just as we knew would happen, they are going to tear him apart however they can.

    First: The 'basketball rather then visit the troops' ... all the talking heads missed that one ... the real meaning was to link a black man to basketball .. that will work with the racists.
    Second: Comparing him to Hitler (without actually saying it) when talking to the crods in Germany)

    Third: The Rock Star ad.

    Next: ?

    July 31, 2008 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  15. MalcolmX

    NObama 08!

    July 31, 2008 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  16. clark

    Amazing, the guy doesn't even know which countried border Pakistan and his polling numbers keep going up. Gerald Ford should have been so lucky!

    July 31, 2008 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  17. Dave

    Go figure...Obama still ahead in two Republican states and the media is making it a negative against him. Anybody who thinks the media is helping Obama is full of hot air.

    Obama 08

    July 31, 2008 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  18. test

    so i guess not every one loves the O-man

    July 31, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  19. Joe Reg

    Exxon Mobil profit just $10 shy of $1,500 per second, I repeat per second. I many of us make $1,500 per hour? I guess not too many of us make that much per day. This is what you are going to get with McCain, more of the same of the current administration.

    Don't be fooled people. Wake up before it is too late. No more repubs this year.

    Obama 08/12.

    July 31, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  20. Todd in Texas

    Keep saying we can save as much oil as we can drill by inflating our tires and doing tune ups. That will get you votes, Obama. Yeah, this Obama guy should be our President, if we are looking for a complete dunce.

    I guess if we all listened to his rapper friend that we could belive his load.

    July 31, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  21. JOHN

    Vote third party candidates! The only true change agents! Why stick with the inept parties that got us into this big government mess? Vote Bob Barr or Chuck Baldwin...check them out.

    July 31, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  22. Tim from Ohio

    To be honest, I'm getting a little worried about Obama. I thought once he was the nominee he would have carried a 10-15 point lead over McCain.

    July 31, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  23. Marcia, Marcia, Marcia in CA

    In an election year that the Democrats should be slamming the GOP, we have McCain closing in on Obama.

    Obama can't win, folks.

    And, I am a liberal. I won't be voting for this man.

    July 31, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  24. NoMcSame

    More of the same from John McSame. Obama against Bush, McSame, big oil, and the millions of racist in America. I told you so. Even though he is half and half he is not one of them and Mcsame, FOX and the rest will let them know. Town hall lynchings are about to start. I bet McSame will not have any of them on the south side of Chicago. Obama will play the nice guy and let McSame drag him out into the boonies where he knows he will have help. The dream is about to end. The fix is on and the same old republican tricks are about to be played. Brainwashing is about to begin and by the time they come out of it McSame if he lives long enough will be in his second term.
    Don't get mad at me, get mad at yourself for falling time after time for the same old tricks.
    Obama08 The Dream

    July 31, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |

    I don't know who you people are polling, because I have yet to meet one single person that have been polled.

    July 31, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
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