September 8th, 2008
12:35 PM ET
15 years ago

CNN Poll: Race dead even

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="McCain and Obama are dead even in a new CNN poll."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - A new national poll taken entirely after the end of the Republican convention suggests the race for the White House between John McCain and Barack Obama is dead even.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation Poll out Monday afternoon has McCain and Obama tied at 48 percent each among registered voters questioned. Three percent of voters are undecided in the survey, which was conducted Friday through Sunday.

Read full poll results [PDF]

The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll is one of three new surveys taken mostly over the weekend. The other two are a Gallup Tracking Poll and a Diageo/Hotline survey. When all three are averaged together for a new CNN Poll of Polls, the results have McCain up one point, 47 percent to 46 percent. That’s the first time in the CNN Poll of Polls that McCain has an advantage over Obama.

Watch: McCain, Obama deadlocked

The battle for the presidency also includes some minor party candidates, including Independent Ralph Nader, Libertarian Party candidate Bob Barr, and Green Party candidate Cynthia McKinney — but the poll suggests they don’t have any impact on the shape of the race.

When they are added to the equation, the race between McCain and Obama remains tied, at 45 percent each, with Nader and Barr at 3 percent each and McKinney at 1 percent.

Has the Republican convention and the naming of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as his running mate given McCain a bounce in the polls?

“Other polls are showing ‘convention bounces’ for McCain, but ours does not,’ says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. “The reason is probably due to the fact that the CNN poll has had a very low number of respondents who say they are undecided for several months. Bounces tend to occur when undecided voters switch to a candidate, but with so few truly undecided voters in our polls, there was little room for a bounce for Obama or McCain.”

Holland also points out that despite a concerted outreach by the McCain-Palin team to former women supporters of Hillary Clinton’s presidential bid, women nationwide seem to be sticking with Obama – 52 percent of women are planning to vote Democratic, while 51 percent of men are in the GOP column.
The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was based on 1,022 telephone interviews. The survey’s sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (222 Responses)
  1. bob in L.A.

    Dems got a bump. The Reps got a bump. Now let's see what happens when peopel really stop and think about the mother of 5, including a special needs child.
    Whether or not you like her, whenther or not she is qualified, there is something to be said for timing.
    John Edwards should not have run again when his wife's cancer came back and a woman with anew born should not be taking on a task like VP. This is not tosay women can't work after giving birth. It's the job she is seeking and the timing.
    Family is obviously not a top priority for Sarah. It says volumes about her to me as it did about Edwards.
    And by the way- who looks after the family while she is doign her job?
    Does the American public pick up the tab for taking care of 5 -6 -7 kids? Who will Brisol be living with?

    September 8, 2008 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  2. Tired of W, OH

    I believe that Clinton tearing down Palin is the only way she can redeem herself in the eyes of the Democratic party and her one-time supporters (like me), after her kitchen sink campaign against Obama. Palin's too scared to take on the "big bad liberal media" all by herself. Her upcoming interview on ABC later this week will be a joke, just like the Democratic primary debate on ABC was.

    Clinton's already proven her mastery of the dark side (aka republican playbook). She might as well use her powers for good, this time. Besides, the republicans will just cry "sexism" if anyone else says anything negative against Palin.

    September 8, 2008 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  3. 4Obama

    The country is divided between people who are attracted by truth (Obama) and people who are attracted to divisive means (McCain).....let's pray that there are more independents into the truth than into lying.

    September 8, 2008 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  4. Republican 4 Life

    Palin shows what a crook it is for women to take off from work with family leave to raise a baby. Palin has a 4 month old and has never stopped working. We have women at my job that have taken off from work for months leaving us with double work and holding the bag. If Palin can do it so can the rest of them. Once again Republicans showing the way the rest of the lazy ones should live and work. If you have to take off then please don't have a child it cost the rest of us. The family leave thing should be looked into or maybe even overturned. What's good for the goose is good for the gander. In other words if she can do it so can you.
    McCain-Palin08 Mavericks New day's Old Ways

    September 8, 2008 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  5. Bob Indianapolis, IN

    It is becoming increasingly obvious that the Reptilican Party could wrap cow manure in red, white and blue and sell it as candy bars and have dittoheads lined up around the block!

    DO you REALLY want a redux of the past eight years? Are you feeling really prosperous? DO you want your children to learn creationism instead of REAL SCIENCE that made America a world leader? DO you want to continue giving tax breaks to the rich and corporations while your neighbors lose their homes and have their jobs shipped to China? WAKE UP!!!

    September 8, 2008 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  6. D

    Come on who are these pollers calling? No one answers there lan line phones anymore...these polls DO NOT take the pulse of EVERY American but only a SELECT GROUP of them...Wait until NOV 4 when the REAL POLLS SHOW who Americans really want...and oh LADY's dont forget the REPUBs will take your rights away and you know what that mean...NO MORE RIGHT TO CHOOSE....then what will you think of YOUR MAVERICKS?????

    September 8, 2008 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  7. Enlightened Voter

    Only in a Rethiglican America is a black man who is a Constitutional Law Scholar, who served 8 yrs as State Senator and 4 yrs as US Senator and served on the Foreign Intelligence Committee not ever considered ready to lead but a white evangelical ultra conservative woman, with a BA in Journalism and 19 mos as Governor considered ready on day one. BTW Barack, you are my hero for your community service and don't let paliar tell you any different.

    September 8, 2008 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  8. no fear

    Whatever your party affiliation I encourage you to gather more information on Govenor Palin. SHe is not all she professes to be and more of some of what she says she is not.

    I know, that can be said of most politicans but still, it's important to be informed as much as possible before this election about all of the candidates.

    I often refer back to a relevant quote:
    It is fortunate for those in power that people do not think.

    September 8, 2008 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  9. Ace

    Somebody should have picked Clinton

    September 8, 2008 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  10. Obama/Biden 08

    No kidding the race is really close. Ever heard of a post-convention bounce? The Democrats saw it, and now the Republicans are seeing it. Call me in two weeks with the polls numbers, and I might care.

    September 8, 2008 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  11. Phantom of the Oprah

    The dirty way that Obama stole the nomination will come back to haunt him.

    The democrats should have allowed the democratic process to play out and should have let the voters pick the nominee.

    Political correctness as far as race, but misogyny as the tactic... well not a smart strategy.

    Obama will use anyone and say anything and do anything to win- He inspired and encouraged intra-party divisive vitriol. His sense of self importance put his ego before party and before country.

    Now I hope he learns a lesson in decency, humility, in fair campaigning and in the democratic process.

    CHEATING is NOT winning. Dirty Chicago style politics to gut a candidate of your own part will NOT fly on the national stage.

    September 8, 2008 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  12. welches, oregon

    If the conservative right wing wish to make abortion illegal – overturning Roe v. Wade, then I think an equitable step is to require by law that all male sex offenders get vasectomies. On this issue, women are the ones whose rights will be taken away. Men should have an equal sacrifice. Palin isn't going to support women on this issue.

    September 8, 2008 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  13. Don't believe the hype

    These polls are flawed. They exclude people who use cell phones exclusively. Don't believe them.

    September 8, 2008 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  14. watching from the sidelines

    The very fact that this race is dead even shows how stupid America is
    How can sane people consider voting repuglican again ?

    September 8, 2008 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  15. Kevin,FL

    Well USA Today/Gallup has McCain up by 10points why didn't CNN include this poll?

    September 8, 2008 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  16. Doesn't matter

    It's the electoral votes, people. Everyone decided to ignore the delegate counts until they were desperate enough to challenge the rules, and now they're ignoring the fact that the so-called "big states" are Democratic or leaning as such. McCain doesn't have a snowball's chance.

    And NO, Obama should NOT have selected Hillary. All her words are being used again her now, imagine if she was the VP Candidate!

    September 8, 2008 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  17. Robert

    Unbelievable poll numbers. The 1022 people you based these polls on, must have been 1022 Republicans. The majority of American people are NOT going to vote the Republicans back in office to continue to Bankrupt this Country...we cannot take 4 more years of Republican mismanagement.

    September 8, 2008 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  18. cherrystrawberry

    "Holland also points out that despite a concerted outreach by the McCain-Palin team to former women supporters of Hillary Clinton’s presidential bid, women nationwide seem to be sticking with Obama – 52 percent of women are planning to vote Democratic"

    we woman are not as stupid as McCain would have you believe. Now we MUST get the newly registered voters to VOTE!!!!

    September 8, 2008 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  19. Republicans Hate America

    Just confirms how the GOP hate America by willing to vote for a VP candidate that wants to separate Alaska from the U.S. and then have the nerve to say Obama doesn't wear a flag pin. I dont care if I end up being the only one to vote for Obama but I refuse to accept you rednecks as Americans

    September 8, 2008 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  20. Scott NYC Independent

    During the 2002 and the 2004 election the majority of voters picked a President that had “experience” and was intellectually challenged. We now have a failing economy, record high foreclosures, decades high unemployment, health care crisis, manufacturing layoffs by the 10’s of thousands, war on two fronts, highest deficit ever, indebted to foreign countries and illegal immigration out of control. If the “non-intellectual” party wins again then we will deserve the pain that will suffer. There is an old saying – a leopard doesn’t change his spots they just get wider.

    September 8, 2008 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  21. Obama Campaign

    Our ongoing efforts to link the independent-minded maverick reformer John McCain and his kindred spirit Sarah Palin with the Bush-Cheney administration seem to be losing traction. And this despite the fact that we have issued a memorandum to all Obama supporters to continually refer to the Bush-McCain embrace.

    Where do we go from here? 🙁

    September 8, 2008 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  22. Dee Jay a young republican

    This country is DUMDED

    IF these dumb people stop looking at race and gender/.... the right choice will be made

    I hate dumb voters


    OH and im a republican

    September 8, 2008 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  23. Eli

    I am a life long Democrat that voted for Hillary Clinton beacuse this was her year. She was the best person for the job. For some reason the heads of the Democratic party and media wanted B Obama. No matter what happen some older more experienced Democrat came running out to prop Obama up when he seemd to fall. I guess you can call me bitter , but I refuse to vote for someone that I think can not do the job let alone deserves it. Like the old saying "They made their bed now they will have to lie in it" we DEMS deserve what we get. This was a year that DEMOCRATS could have easily taken the White house back but the top dog screwed it up.

    September 8, 2008 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  24. Barb

    Can anyone out there tell me if any of these polls includes the younger generation that only has cell phones? If it does not, how can we take the results seriously if we are leaving out all those young people that have lan phones?

    September 8, 2008 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  25. George

    Gosh i hope we have another 2000 election...because it wont be like the last time! If its close and their is any hanky panky going on by the GOP they just might have riots on their hands...and I mean riots that will mke the 60's look like school yard fights.

    September 8, 2008 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
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