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. Deez

    I'd like to see a poll of Europe. Although the world is ready for change, I've heard from friends over their that parliment (in the UK)have serious reservations about Obama's ability to lead. Ultimately all that matters is the opinion in the US though.

    September 8, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  2. Jason

    How could the GOP convention have actually provided a bounce for McCain? Every single speech was garbage. Election years are such a depressing reminder that most of the population consists of complete idiots.

    September 8, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  3. Fewer are fools for Obama each day.

    Obama's bandwagon was coasting to a stop by the end of the democratic primaries.

    The nice half black young man with a winning smile and a good speech, got just SO far without any specifics on platform and the issues.

    Hillary was policy wonking and he was blowing his own horn with lofty speeches about how great HE WOULD be. Obama spent too much time self-promoting and bragging about his judgement and his own perfection.

    Obama created a myth of his destiny as a gift from God to save the nation and the Globe. His self-absorption did not bode well with EVERYone.

    Now Palin showed she was not afraid to mention that the emperor has no clothes. Millions upon millions of people have seen this all along but the MSM kept building up the hype of hope, the great Obama.

    Lets hope this is finally the turning point and Americans have come to their senses. This is NOT American idol.

    September 8, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  4. informed

    do yourselves and your country a favor and goole: Anne Kilkenny.
    She is an Alaskan resident and offers compelling information about palin. Be informed.

    September 8, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  5. David Orbach, New York, NY

    Post convention bounce is meaningless.

    September 8, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  6. April Garlow

    CNN has repeatedly shown it's bias toward Obama from the beginning, so it doesn't surprise me that their's is the only poll that doesn't have McCain ahead. They should really poll how many people have stopped watching them, especially since their TABLOID type coverage of Govenor Palin.The comments were better suited to the locker room or the gossiping at the beauty salon than to the news.

    September 8, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  7. Anonymous

    McCain and Palin are the strongest and proven experienced leaders to run our country. McCain will clean up Washington and get our country in shape from what the past presidents have done. McCain and Palin are proven to be men and women of their word. McCain and Palin don't point fingers they get the job done. They are fair when it comes to doing things, as they have the best interest at heart for the people in the USA. We need the strongest leadership possible now. Our country is in a big mess. Regardless of who is to blame, it must be cleaned up now. Believe in Mccain / Palin. You know John McCain is a Proud American, as we all are, and will certainly get this country going in the right direction.

    September 8, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  8. Larry

    Let's see where the polls are on the Monday before the election

    September 8, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  9. Drexxan

    I am not trying to compare McCain to Hitler. The man, as we all know well, is a war hero...the man had his life in line for this Great Country.Period.
    I am comparing though the American people to the Germany people during war time. You can't ignore the smell of human flesh being burnt. Unless you choose to do so. Unless you really hate jews or soviets or brits but you are too coward to admit it. So you choose to pretend in the lies a person is saying and then if it goes wrong once again you will pretend you didn't know.

    Facts are facts. The economy numbers are there. The bodies of your fallen heroes are there, the images of your stupid president are there for EVERYONE to see. You can't pretend you don't see it. Just like human flesh burning, you can't ignore it

    Now, are these people voting for "more of the same"??It is a shame and if these two clowns happen to win this election it will only show the true collors of an America that the WHOLE world is learning to hate.


    One Love,

    Obama '08.

    September 8, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  10. Jackie, Minneapolis

    Both candidates expected a bump in the polls after their respective conventions. I don't put alot of faith into polls this early. I really hope people aren't as dumb this election as they were the past two. However, I don't have any faith in the American people and their ability to think in a open-minded manner. Look at how many idiots voted for Bush, not once, but TWICE.

    September 8, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  11. Lorna, NY

    Who are they polling? The media is at it again. I will not longer watch CNN, I will no longer buy the NY Post. When George Bush declared war on Iraq, our media went right along with the lies. They did not investigate to find out if these were truth or lies. Now they are doing it again with this election. The media has not called McCain on the carpet of his hiding of Sarah from the news. If this was Obama, the media would have been all over him. I am convinced that the Republicans owns all media and news outlets and will steal or try and steal this election AGAIN. SHAME ON THE MEDIA FOR NOT DELIVERING THE NEWS. SHAME ON THEM FOR DECEIVING THE AMERICAN PUBLIC. We are wiser now and will not allow this to happen.

    September 8, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  12. Mary Morris

    I hope the media is not afraid to really pursue the credibility of Sarah Palin. They talk about experience. I haven't heard anything about Sarah Palins education. I cannot believe the overt manipulation of the republican party. We need to get brave as a country and really vote for change with Obama. The republicans had their chance and blew it big time.

    September 8, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  13. mike

    It's just the post-convention bump, and it won't last.

    It's going to be Obama, and I think it's going to be a landslide – there's a whole cross section of America out there that has never had a landline, and doesn't get polled – and I think these are going to be mostly Democratic voters, when you think about who these people are.

    September 8, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  14. Kaye

    GO McCAIN.... We are so dedicated to you that we'll send our youth into battle for you. Fight, fight, fight!

    September 8, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  15. Kelby from Houston, TX

    Ahhh yes, the magnificent POLL OF POLLS! The divining rod of our political winds, what news do you bring us of the impending election. OH, POLL OF POLLS, oh prophet of politics, oracle of officials give a sign so that we may know what the eloctorate is thinking. OH POLL OF POLLS give us a glimpse into the concious of the constituents.

    (in order for this comment to be read properly, one must read it out loud in a British accent. And you must raise the volume of your voice when ever you say POLL OF POLLS!!)

    September 8, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  16. mattos

    Polling registered voters rather than 'likely' voters is an old pollsters trick...Among likely voters McCain is over 50% & leads by 4% over Obama'a 46. See today's USA Today/Gallup poll.

    September 8, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  17. Eric-29-m-PA

    The USA Today/Gallup poll has McCain ahead by 10 points! He's also ahead by 1 point according to a Rasmussen poll and 3 points according to the daily Gallup tracking poll. A hotline/FD tracking poll has the race tied. All of these polls had Obama ahead by greater than 5 points. This is a huge bump for McCain. I don't trust CNN's polls. I think they gave a strong weight to Jack Cafferty.


    September 8, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  18. cool onlooker

    This dead even result does not mean too much to intelligent voters. Open your eyes. How many more years can American people tolerate the current situation?
    Obama – Biden '08

    September 8, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  19. Michael, watching from Canada

    This is a confirmation that Americans really don't think there is a problem with their economy!!

    This is a confirmation that Americans are happy with their health care!

    This is a confirmation that Americans feel that they have done well under the Bush administration.

    AND MOST IMPORTANTLY.......This is a confirmation that party loyalty is most important and that they really don't want change.


    September 8, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  20. Ron L

    This is not a surprise for the following reason...
    Governor Palin is now a WILDCARD that has generated a lot of excitement for the Republican base. The reason I use the term Wildcard is we really don't know much about her and until we do it is hard to say her what her impact will be on the Independent voters who tend to be more centered in their beliefs.
    In 2 or 3 weeks we will know if Gov. Palin impact is enduring or just a BLIP on the political landscape!! My money is on the blip effect. There is just something about her that tells me she is arrogant in the same way G. Bush and D. Cheney and this will come through in One on One interviews with the different News Anchors.
    IF, I am correct you will see about a 5 point shift toward Obama.
    If I am wrong the race WILL BE a SQUEAKER!!
    By the way does the POLL of POLLS data reflect the people in the country under 35 that only have cell phones and no hard land lines. If it doesn't I don't know how it can be accurate by plus or minus 3%

    September 8, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  21. Mikey in San Antonio

    Once again, Americans are making a decision that will influence years to come. Unfortunately, we have some individuals who are going to vote for a person who will once again continue to "stay the course" in terms of the economy, the wars, policies, etc.

    Maybe individuals should have a minimum IQ to vote.

    Wake up America!

    September 8, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  22. Marie C.

    Don't worry Barack, we got your back!!!

    September 8, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  23. Ron

    ha ha ha what a joke you guys are even admitting bias who needs this blog Obama holds on to slim lead same results for McCain polls are dead even you know other polls have McCain ahead why let other networks make you look bad

    September 8, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  24. Damocles Sword

    Good news! No convention bounce for McCain and his pitbull. By the way, where is Palin ? She is probably at an undisclosed location being groomed by the lobbysts... I mean... by the McCain campaign.
    She is probably reciting names of the countries and their presidents at this moment.

    September 8, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  25. Nicole

    This is very scary! I really don't understand how anyone would vote for McBush. We lost over 800,000 jobs in the month of August by itself and McBush doesn't have a plan to help with this because during the entire GOP convention the only thing they talked about was how bad a person Obama! And don't get me started on Palin. How can anybody believe she is qualified to be a heartbeat away from President?

    But you know this should be surprising at all, we are talking about the same people that voted for Bush not once but TWICE!

    People wake up! We do you really want to give the Republicans another 4 yrs wasn't 8 enough!

    September 8, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9