August 19th, 2008
07:35 PM ET
14 years ago

CNN poll of polls: Obama lead cut in half


[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="A new CNN poll of polls shows Obama's lead is dwindling."]

(CNN) - In what could be an ominous sign for Barack Obama just days before he is formally named the Democratic presidential nominee, a new CNN poll of polls out Tuesday shows the Illinois senator's lead over John McCain has been cut in half in recent days.

According to CNN's average of several recent national surveys, Obama's lead is now a slim 3 points over the Arizona senator, 46-43 percent - half of his advantage in a CNN poll of polls one week ago, and down from a high of 8 points in mid-July.

Election Center: Check out CNN's electoral map

The latest poll results come amid increased attacks from McCain on Obama's readiness to be commander-in-chief and the re-emergence of national security worries among voters in the wake of the Georgia crisis.

“Over the last week, we’ve seen Sen. Obama’s lead in the poll of polls cut in half,” noted CNN Senior Political Researcher Alan Silverleib. “This change was likely driven by a renewed focus on foreign policy after Russia’s invasion of Georgia, as well as by Sen. McCain’s willingness to launch more aggressive attacks against Obama on issues such as off-shore drilling."

A Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll out Tuesday evening was the latest national survey to indicate Obama's lead is dwindling, putting the Illinois senator ahead of McCain by only 2 points, well within the poll's margin of error. The CNN Poll of polls also includes new surveys from Quinnipiac and Gallup.

But the recent downturn in the polls for Obama may not last - the Democratic White House hopeful is headed for a week of what is likely to be overwhelmingly postive coverage as he names his running mate and officially accepts his party's presidential nomination.

"The big question now is whether Obama can successfully regain control of the campaign agenda as we head into the Democratic convention," Silverleib also said.

soundoff (159 Responses)
  1. Jerry

    It's OK Nobamists! I will not say "I told you so"!

    Stay tuned...

    August 19, 2008 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  2. Crush Rush

    I laugh at the made up polls.Its like the carnival barker hoping to gain more interest in what hes selling.Lets hope that one day an insider exposes the polls for what they really are.They are for leading mindless morons.

    August 19, 2008 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  3. juiceball

    This is the same poll that just a few weeks ago indicated that OBAMA's support was dwindling, then it went backup to 6 percent, and now it's dwindling again – These polls aren't worth the ink that's used to print the results. Next week he'll be back up again. I don't believe any of these polls. No one called my house! 🙂

    August 19, 2008 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  4. Fred

    How hypocritical of the Obama campaign to accuse Sen. McCain of links to big oil, when it was Obama's father AND stepfather who was actually, in oil.

    August 19, 2008 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  5. Elaine wilson

    Obama can win only if he picks Hillary Clinton as his vp. I hope he sees this. She has earned the right to be vp. If he really wants change then he will have the first AM and a woman to represent we the people. If people have any understanding and appreciation for women they will support Hillary as vp. Those who hate the Clintons may just cause Obama to lose this race.

    August 19, 2008 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  6. jackjack

    Did I read that wrong? Obama is still ahead and McCain still behind?

    not news.

    August 19, 2008 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  7. Frank, San Francisco

    You still have time to change your mind. Hmmm..Biden, Bayh or Hillary.
    If the Obama supporters really want to win, I think we all know who he should pick. Seems to me for all the grandstanding the Obamamaniacs are allowing their dislike of Clinton from ensuring a Dem victory in Nov not the other way around.

    August 19, 2008 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |


    August 19, 2008 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  9. slowday

    The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Tuesday shows Barack Obama attracting 45% of the vote while John McCain earns 42%.

    When "leaners" are included, it’s Obama 47% and McCain 45%

    August 19, 2008 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  10. J. Ryan

    Obama never had a strong lead over McCain. The only Democrat who did was Clinton.

    Obama is simply proving what his critics have said all along: the man's rhetoric is not backed by any sound policy, he is far too inexperienced to lead, and he is too self-absorbed to be able to admit any of this.

    Former Dem.

    August 19, 2008 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  11. curiousnumbers

    that means Obama is still winning..even with only land line voters huh?

    wow...add in the cell phone gen and what does that give you.....?

    August 19, 2008 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  12. Mr Magoo

    Leave it to CNN to take a poll that has fluctuated only 3 pointsa either way for 2 months and it fluctuates 2 points and CNN calls it cutting it in half.
    I love you guys at CNN, but this is just creating a headline.
    Meanwhile Obama continues his big electoral college lead, the only poll that will matter
    CNN just wants a close election for ratings.

    August 19, 2008 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  13. mk

    once again the real story is McCain hasn't MOVED ON INCH in the polls.
    Why is that? If he is so all powerfull why does he stay at 42-43 week after week?

    August 19, 2008 07:40 pm at 7:40 pm |
  14. Independent from FL

    He NEEDS CLINTON!!! He will lose if it's not CLINTON!
    This is the ONLY party unity solution to win the white house otherwise he'll lose.

    August 19, 2008 07:40 pm at 7:40 pm |
  15. Foreign Observer

    where do these rumors originate that Obama "stumbled and fumbled" during the Q&A with Warren? He listened to the question, thought for a moment, and gave articulate answers that actually included subordinate clauses. Whereas McCain, who likely cheated on the whole event anyway, produced one-line main clause soundbites he's pandered a hundred times before. Ask yourself how you want the president to react when a complicated question of problem comes up: "Drill!", "Forgiven", "Defeat It", "At Conception!" guy or the man who thinks things through?

    August 19, 2008 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  16. jeff, Los Angeles, CA

    Really?!? I haven't been called, in fact no one I know has been called. Who is being asked? These polls are media driven therefore skewed, and what does the media want? A horse race. Ratings are at stake here and a landslide election by Obama wouldn't bring them. So everything has to be close. The younger generation are in control of this election and they aren't being asked and no matter what anyone else may say, they say Obama.

    August 19, 2008 07:42 pm at 7:42 pm |
  17. Louis Jacinto

    Voting for men again, after 232 years! YAWN!

    "He Can't Win Without Her!"

    August 19, 2008 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  18. Tom

    This will be the year when the debates will really make the difference. McSame is terrible in debates. He really has nothing to offer and will when he performs poorly – and he will – it will all be over and McCain will lose. So, for now the polls are interesting, but almost meaningless.

    August 19, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  19. Republicans hate america

    if McCain wins this it will just show how stupid this country is and will deserve the hardships they will put themselves in. I just cant believe the majority are that blind and stupid.

    August 19, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  20. Barbara - NC

    No more wealthy old republican warmongers.

    We want our country back.

    Go Obama '08

    August 19, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  21. Cant Wait

    Mr. McCain has clear concise answers to questions. One would have to think that he understands himself and what he believes in.

    Mr. Obama. uh, er, seems to, uh hedge and and, er qualify, uh, his every answer. One would be lead to believe that Mr. Obama doesn't know what he thinks without someone telling him what to say.

    August 19, 2008 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  22. sharon

    If B.O. had resounding experience doing anything, if he honestly knew what he believed, if his friends weren't haters of this amazing country......he might be a more attractive candidate. But he's none of the above!

    August 19, 2008 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  23. M

    McCain 08, Hillary 2012!

    August 19, 2008 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  24. RyanD.

    Electoral College, anyone?

    Obama 08'

    August 19, 2008 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  25. Barbara - NC

    Don't you people get it yet? CNN and others do this to keep their ratings up. If it was a landslide one way or the other, no on would watch. MEDIA MIND GAMES

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

    August 19, 2008 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
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