September 8th, 2008
03:08 PM ET
12 years ago

Candidates talk change to sway undecided

Sen. John McCain and Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin call themselves the 'original mavericks' in a new TV ad.

Sen. John McCain and Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin call themselves the 'original mavericks' in a new TV ad.

(CNN) - As the candidates try to win over undecided voters, both Republicans and Democrats are pushing a message of change.

CNN's latest "poll of polls" shows Sen. John McCain leading Sen. Barack Obama 47 percent to 46 percent.

Monday's poll of polls shows that 7 percent of voters are undecided - enough to push either candidate over the top.

With the election less than two months away, the candidates have limited time to sway undecided voters who hold the election in their hands.

According to John Avlon, author of "Independent Nation: How Centrists Can Change American Politics," independent and swing voters are looking for a break from the Bush administration.

"What they're looking for in this campaign is a candidate who's going to end the hyper-partisanship in Washington and who's going to have credibility on reducing spending, but also sort of the antidote to the Bush administration," he said on CNN's "American Morning." "They've been - instead of fiscally conservative - fiscally liberal and socially conservative, and that's the opposite of what independents and swing voters want."

Change essentially means new people and new policies, said Bill Schneider, CNN's senior political analyst.

"It's exactly the theme that people want for this year after eight years of the Bush administration," he said. "But the big puzzle in this election is - what's the best way to get that?"

Full story

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Joe Biden • John McCain • Sarah Palin
soundoff (171 Responses)
  1. Erik

    The Geezer and the Gimmick are not what America needs for the next four years.

    September 8, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  2. Anonymous

    The hate goes on...

    News for all those that think McCain is using, steeling, somehow Obamas talking point of change.


    McCain has worked across the isle and will continue to do so if he wins this race or not.

    McCain Kennedy..... McCain Feingold

    McCain has a track record that is in the senate record NOT JUST WORDS.

    Palin is not a GOP stooge and has battled her OWN party (as well as McCain)

    They (McCain/Palin have a true REAL track record of CHANGE not JUST WORDS.

    It could easily be said OBAMA isn't the Change candidate but just talks about change and a fantasy love fest future (inhaled one to many times I think)

    (BTW polls do use cell phones go to gallups web site and look for yourselves at their methods)

    September 8, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  3. Anonymous

    Bush deregulated the mortgage industry.

    Wasn't the true architect of the de-regulation McCain's economic advisor, Phil "Mental Recession," "Nation of Whiners" Gramm?

    September 8, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  4. Mike for Ca

    Just keep on with the lies, the American people have consistantly proved to be stupid and gullible and will fall for it. The republican lie and smear machine puts the greatest ones in history to shame.

    September 8, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  5. Michael

    REWIND THE TAPE September 8th, 2008 3:56 pm ET

    This may be the wrong place to say this but CNN please post to get this straight once and for all.

    Palin DID NOT say she "SOLD" that jet on Ebay.
    Rewind the tape…she said, and I quote:
    "I PUT it on Ebay. She PUT it on Ebay


    You are correct, BUT McCain and or members of His Campaign said the plane was SOLD on e-bay!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    September 8, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  6. FactCheck

    Someone please tell Gov. Palin that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are not government institutions but private corporations. She seems to have a hard time with this economics stuff. Good thing that the country is in such fine shape with respect to the economy and to housing. Otherwise, we'd all be up h*ll's creek.

    September 8, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  7. n jax

    The only change that the repub could bring is changing bathroom stalls. No thank larry or john and the repubics, I don't care about your family values.

    September 8, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  8. W O W WO W

    P A L I N,,,,,,,,,,,,S T E A L S,,,,,,,,,,,,,,H E A R T S,,,,,,,,,,,

    O B A M A,,,,,,,,,,,,,,W O R K S,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,W A L L E T S

    September 8, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  9. Dj

    Truth can be described like this: like oil in water it will soon rise to the surface... for all to see.

    When this FARCE is exposed, the republican party will face great humiliation. I hope it lingers until days before the election to eliminate the spin, lies, and damage control that they are so adept at.

    "Pride goes before destruction." To my evangelical friends, please tell who wrote these words. I would be SHOCKED if any of you know.

    September 8, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  10. Sharon Kitchen

    Should she and McSelf be wary that bush likes her as his pick.? she could be called palinbush.....oh, oh. but realy,,,she should get ALL her facts straight....yeh,know staight talk express...and all........there are many articles and people that have put the REAL story out on the web......she was first FOR the bridge to no-where. Google Sen ted Stevens or 527 group for him that she was in charge of. Google her lt. gov campaign $ she recieved, or Veco Corp. for the tie that binds....but that is only if you wnat to know the truth......maybe she should check out all her stories before she does anymore interviews............or adds.She should also be very maindful of all the people that may not be bought.....ex: trooper-gate,on-going investigation........

    September 8, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  11. FearLessInFlorida

    You Can Fool Some Of The People All Of The Time, And All Of The People Some Of The Time, But You Cannot Fool All Of The People All Of The Time.

    McCain/Republican Ticket?
    Used connections to move up in Navy. NOT MY VOTE!
    Hot-shot flew planes without learning all. NOT MY VOTE!
    Got himself shot down & did not know how to eject. NOT MY VOTE!
    McCain party imprisons, TORTURES & NO TRIAL. NOT MY VOTE!
    Cheated on wife and dumped her after her accident. NOT MY VOTE!
    Helped Bush grind America into the dirt. Not my Vote!
    Songbird McCain, then suicidal in Vietnam. NOT MY VOTE!
    Stockholm Syndrome- McCain embraces torturers! NOT MY VOTE!
    “Hair-trigger temper”, PTSD behavior persists. NOT MY VOTE!
    Engage in unjust WARS, W/O calming of tensions. NOT MY VOTE!
    Went ballistic on Alfond, (brother-MIA) made her cry! NOT MY VOTE!
    Over 90% vote with Bush! NOT MY VOTE!
    Claims surge worked. NOT MY VOTE!
    Claims pro-life- no changes in over 25 years! NOT MY VOTE!
    apPALIN female pitbull VP choice to boost votes. NOT MY VOTE!
    Mocking community organizing-Help others like Cindy’s drug & theft problem. NOT MY VOTE.
    Rudy-public funds> cheat on wife, city agencies – cover-up. NOT MY VOTE.
    Lies about IRAQ (WMD). NOT MY VOTE.
    The economy and other crushing issues. NOT MY VOTE.

    September 8, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  12. Marie in Ohio

    Here is a list of the things that the McCain/Palin ticket would change

    1. No choice for women
    2. Extended war-extended war profiteering by military contractors
    3. Mandatory Military Draft
    4. Reduction in your rights by appointing extreme right wing judges

    Bush/Cheney have had a good time giving tax cuts to the RICH, so I guess that wouldn't change under McCain.

    Please people wake up and smell the real change!

    September 8, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  13. Angie

    John McCain is a Republican joke. If he becomes president, the only change we're going to see is the color of our troops uniforms. He's not yelling the words "Victory" for nothing! I smell an alternative motive stemming from 40 years ago. He never has anything to say about the economy because he doesn't care about it. He doesn't have to worry about not being able to pay for gas or how he's going to pay for his mortgage. He doesn't even have to worry about not having a job.The only thing he's concerned about is the war. I know the people of America are smarter then McCain thinks they are.

    September 8, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  14. S.A.M. from Virginia

    Why didn't McCain have a change message when he started his campaign? He represents a change for the worst. He is part of the problem in Washington that needs fixing. He is not change, just more of the same.

    September 8, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  15. FactCheck

    > I'm just grateful no one ever mentions the fact that I've voted 96% of the time with Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi.

    Last time I looked, these weren't the yahoos that drove this country into the ground. I hope that you are fluent in Cantonese... you will need to be when you are cleaning toilets for your new employers.

    September 8, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  16. Ron

    How is it that McCain never mentioned the word "CHANGE" until he was in the last throws of the campaign and suddenly has chose to use buzz words like HOPE, CHANGE, and the need for everyone to do more for their country?

    I guess mimicking someone is the greatest compliment of them all. If that is the case we might has well vote for the candidate he is mimicking – OBAMA.

    Obama/Biden 08

    September 8, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  17. Lorenzo from Atlanta

    I love this country! I'm going to go out and run red lights, lie to my wife and kids, and punch the next old lady I see in the face. Why? Because I'm the new MAVERICK according to the GOP definition. I follow no ones rules but my own.

    September 8, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  18. A Woman In California For Obama:

    That's right CNN-keep on trying to fool us. So they THINK they finally found an answer to Obama? The American people will show them in November they HAVEN'T. McCain and his "female" whatever will be out of sight and out of mind real soon.

    McCain/Female '08. What a joke.

    September 8, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  19. Marie

    What are they mavericks of? They don't even discuss policy issues. You don't hear about their views on the economy, healthcare, jobs or the war. They are not for change. The only reason McCain might win is because she is a woman. She's entirely too conservative. Palin will take away a woman's right to choose. Be careful who you vote for!

    September 8, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  20. gee

    I dont , want to repeat the same old thing s for the next 4yr , pleased
    McCain and sarah , please stop fooling the public. please, please.

    September 8, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  21. S.A.M. from Virginia

    No originality McCain. Shows me how much less of a man you are. Come up with ideas of your own and stop biting. Maybe if you would have talked about change 26 years ago we wouldn't be in the predicament we're in.

    September 8, 2008 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  22. Tjstelten

    A comment on rewind the tape. It was McCain that said she sold it on ebay and for a profit, which also is not true. The GOP's are braced to play down and dirty! Lest we dare to forget the last eight years! It will get much worse if these two are calling the shots. I pray everyday that Obama will win. He's a good and decent man. He is the leader we really need that can bring change. For awhile I thought Palin was pretty, but the lies and digs make her less attractive each day!

    September 8, 2008 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  23. Ralph

    Desperate, desperate democrats. Comparing Obama to Jesus is pathetic. Pontius Pilate to Palin? For the record Pilate washed his hands of the whole thing. The people yelled Barabas, give us Barabas...Break out the wallets Obama-bots, give until your broke.

    September 8, 2008 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  24. JB

    The media is sickening. What has Sarah Palin done for Alaska Really??? The media will do anything for news. I don't believe the polls or the media. Let's see what happens November 4th.

    September 8, 2008 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  25. Dj

    Ummm, Mr "Rewind the tape"

    She didn't say she sold it on eBay... you are correct... BUT McDeaf said it... more than once...

    Which speaks to his lack of respect for her (and women in general)... McPig doesn't listen to women... he could care less about what a woman thinks or says...

    Help me if you can!

    September 8, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
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