August 24th, 2008
06:25 PM ET
13 years ago

CNN poll: Post-Biden poll shows dead heat

DENVER, Colorado (CNN) - It’s a dead heat in the race for the White House. The first national poll conducted entirely after Barack Obama publicly named Joe Biden as his running mate suggests that battle for the presidency between the Illinois senator and Republican rival John McCain is all tied up.

In a new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll out Sunday night, 47 percent of those questioned are backing Obama with an equal amount supporting the Arizona senator.

“This looks like a step backward for Obama, who had a 51 to 44 percent advantage last month,” says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.

“Even last week, just before his choice of Joe Biden as his running mate became known, most polls tended to show Obama with a single-digit advantage over McCain,” adds Holland.

So what’s the difference now?

It may be supporters of Hillary Clinton, who still would prefer the Senator from New York as the Democratic Party’s presidential nominee.

Sixty-six percent of Clinton supporters, registered Democrats who want Clinton as the nominee, are now backing Obama. That’s down from 75 percent in the end of June. Twenty-seven percent of them now say they’ll support McCain, up from 16 percent in late June.

“The number of Clinton Democrats who say they would vote for McCain has gone up 11 points since June, enough to account for most although not all of the support McCain has gained in that time,” says Holland.

Clinton and Obama battled throughout the primary season, with Clinton winning more than 40 percent of the delegates. She suspended her bid for the White House and backed Obama in early June, after the end of the primary season.

A majority of registered voters, 54 percent, think Obama’s choice of Delaware Senator Joe Biden as his running mate is an excellent or good decision. That number jumps to 73 percent when just asked of registered Democrats. But it drops to 59 percent when narrowed to Clinton supporters.

“It's not that there's anything wrong with the choice of Joe Biden. A majority of those polled rate the Biden selection as excellent or pretty good. Voters think he is qualified to be president, and with the exception of Al Gore in 1992, the public ranks Biden as the most qualified running mate in recent times," says Holland.

"A lot of Americans don't know who he is, but his favorable rating is 13 points higher than his unfavorables But Biden is not Hillary Clinton, and it's possible that is enough to have moved some of her supporters away from the Democratic ticket, at least temporarily."

Among all Democrats, only 38 percent say Obama should have selected Clinton as his running mate.

Will Biden’s naming as Obama’s running mate make a difference? Maybe not. Seventy-four percent of all voters questioned in the survey say it won’t have any effect on their vote for president.

The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted on Saturday and Sunday, with 1,023 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey’s sampling error is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points for all voters. For registered Democrats, it is plus or minus 4.5 percentage points, and for Democrats who still support Clinton for the party's nomination, it is plus or minus 7.5 percentage points.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain • Polls
soundoff (209 Responses)
  1. mb--texas

    just what cnn wanted to report.anything negative on Obama cnn likes.I do not understand why not report negatives on McCain there are
    out their if you would work as hard on McCain the American people
    would be shocked.Please something positive on Obama there is plenty ou there in America.Thanks in advance.

    August 24, 2008 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  2. Greg FL.

    Give it a break will ya. WEGET IT. YOU ARE NOT GOING TO VOTE FOR OBAMA NO MATTER WHAT HE OR ANYONE ELSE SAYS.Great for you. Enjoy the loss of womens rights when Roe V Wade is over turned. Enjoy sending your kids off to die in another war, compliments of the GOP. Enjoy paying 5 dollars or more for gas. Enjoy the value of your house going down like the Titanic. Enjoy the economy compliments of a man who knows nothing about economics. Enjoy all that McCain will bring, just becuase your candidate ran a bad campaign and lost.

    August 24, 2008 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  3. Betty

    Stir up the trouble CNN – if the unspeakable happens, take the blame yourselves. You just can't report news – you have to create news.

    Even National Enq. wouldn't be so blatant about it.

    August 24, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  4. mike

    GO MCCAIN!!!!

    August 24, 2008 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  5. GOP supporter

    Obama needs Biden to win. If he's losing ground with Biden, he needs a lot of help. The American people still have a problem connecting with him

    August 24, 2008 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  6. Marge Hibbing Mn

    Wait til the MSM finally gets around to spilling the beans on all of obama and his wife's crap. Then McCain is gonna soar. It is a shame the democrats always pick the lousy candidate and let the good one go.

    August 24, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  7. mike

    Greg I will gladly pay $5 for gas rather than give into our enemies. I forgot Obama is an economics professor now.

    August 24, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  8. mike


    August 24, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  9. Betty

    And blatantly refusing to post time and again from people with an opinion FOR obama just shows how prejudiced you are and what spinners you are

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Stir up the trouble CNN – if the unspeakable happens, take the blame yourselves. You just can't report news – you have to create news.

    Even National Enq. wouldn't be so blatant about it.

    August 24, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  10. Chris (WA)

    I second Greg FL.'s words. A Clinton supporter that turns to McCain is proving one thing only: how ignorant and hypocritical they really are.

    ... (or, in some cases, how racist they really are)

    August 24, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  11. Tim

    Greg FL.: With any luck, the Democratic Congress can at least hold McCain at bay for several years. But you said it best.

    August 24, 2008 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  12. Jen

    Your poll is a joke...Check out the new ABC/ Washington Post Poll

    August 24, 2008 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  13. Greg, Aus, TX

    Biden brings nothing to the ticket. He's an OLD insider to the DNC and a major party hack. All he will do is pull the party's socialist line and serve as Barack's poster boy trying to show the combined ticket will have experience. We are NOT voting for Biden in the first place. Unless Hillary is planning on bumping off numb nuts.

    August 24, 2008 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  14. Generation X

    Hey CNN; did you see what happened to the reporter from fox news today at the DNC convention. YOU BETTER WATCH OUT!!! lol

    August 24, 2008 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  15. Betty

    Clinton LOST BLITZER !!!! Give it at least one hour break.

    Oh NO you have to stir and stir and stir and stir

    August 24, 2008 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  16. Maggie

    Who do these polls talk to? I am 53 years old and have never been polled. What do you have to say to get on the list?

    August 24, 2008 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  17. Randy Indiana

    Who really cares who leaked that Obama was going to wait until 3a.m. to tell the American people his running mate would be for V.P. get over it people a bunch of whinners

    August 24, 2008 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  18. Collins- Riverview, FL

    In a way I hope McCain wins so that when the earth is in shambles we can indirectly thank Hillary supporters. Let's come together and realize this is bigger than a preference.

    August 24, 2008 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  19. Shirley-Ohio



    August 24, 2008 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  20. TX Wolverine

    Does anyone else realize that there is a selection bias in this poll? Obviously the group of Democrats who still want Clinton to be the nominee at this point are a subset of that group polled in June, since many of them have already come to terms with reality and realize Obama will be the nominee.

    It's probably not a stretch to think that these supporters who still want Clinton as the nominee were the most anti-Obama of the group polled in June and therefore the numbers now should naturally show a lower percentage voting for him.

    Am I the only one that sees this? I feel like this is just shameless on CNN's part, trying to get a little more "shock" value out of the poll.

    August 24, 2008 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  21. John Smith

    Can you believe how little the Republicans have been able to trash the Dems since Biden became VP.

    Now imagine what the Republicans would have been saying or screening about if Hillary was VP:

    1. Clinton donors to the Clinton library must be released
    2. Will Monica Lewinsky be returning to the White House?
    3 Whatever happened to Bosnia fire?
    4. "I never made love to that woman..."
    5. Hillary file gate?
    6. The recent Clinton- Edwards affairs and the list goes on. Do Dems really wanted this kind of distraction?

    Great Hillary can sit on the Supreme Court and implement Obama-Biden policies. So, let all Dems 'wise up."

    Prediction: If Obama loses this election, it will take another 15 years before any Democratic nominee will ever have a chance!

    August 24, 2008 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  22. lvlax

    And he'll just start sinking more and more...Biden was a horrible pick. Showed everyone he's not for "Change" at all. He's nothing but a preachy voiced charlatan who's immensily unqualified to be president.

    August 24, 2008 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  23. tedious898

    Obama supporters...I've already stated my appreciation for your support of the best candidate. The candidate of character.

    There so many forces against us and our candidate. But let's try something in these convention days. Let's be like our candidate. Humble, kind, and caring for the less fortunate. Even if we lose, its how we lose that matters. (believe me, I'm never this defeatist) but we have already achieved a major victory and my bible says "in all things give thanks"

    August 24, 2008 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  24. Debby

    Wait Fox had McCain 47 and Obama 46 from Gallup so how does CNN have them both at 47?????? Plus CNN you had a poll out on your show today that 57% don't even know who Biden is. Please get your polls straight will ya.

    August 24, 2008 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  25. David

    What did Obama do that was so bad that Clinton supporters would not support him now? He won. That's all he did was get more electoral votes than Hillary. That's it. He didn't slam her nearly as much as, say, Mccain is slamming Obama now. He went to her house to make nice. He didn't "vet" her for VP cuz she didn't want him to look into Bill Clinton's dealings. Puleez - She didn't even want to be VP. She wanted to win. And she didn't. It's not insult. It's math. Get over it.

    August 24, 2008 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9