October 30th, 2008
07:48 PM ET
12 years ago

Poll update: Voters having 'buyer's remorse'?


McCain may be closing the gap, a new CNN poll of polls shows. (Getty Images)

(CNN) - With five days until Election Day, there are signs the presidential race may be tightening, according to a new CNN poll of polls.

According to an average of several recent surveys, Barack Obama's lead over John McCain is down to 5 points nationwide, 49-44 percent - a gap that is 3 points less than it was earlier this week, and nearly half what the margin was one week ago.

Election Center: Check out the latest state polls

The closing of polls late in a presidential race is not unusual: Sen. John Kerry lost his 2004 White House bid despite holding a slim lead over President Bush in its final days and then-Vice President Al Gore trailed Bush by 5 points in early November before the two essentially split the vote days later.

“It’s possible that McCain will continue to close the gap over the final few days of the campaign,” said CNN Senior Political Researcher Alan Silverleib. “Presidential elections often tighten up at the end, especially if there’s not an incumbent on the ballot. Voters sometimes experience a degree of ‘buyer’s remorse’ before settling on a new president."

Historically, however, only one presidential candidate in modern history has come back from the deficit McCain faces to win an election - Ronald Reagan in 1980.

Related: Is it too late for McCain to close the gap?

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (422 Responses)
  1. Joe The Plummer

    The only remorse I have is lying about being a plummer!

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  2. Bart, Terre Haute, IN

    If you look at the averages of the major Polls, it's been hovering around a 6 percent Obama lead for a while now, and holding steady.

    But the polls can be wrong. Get out there and vote, people.

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  3. Me

    Gallup tracking polls show Obama is gaining, not losing, among likely voters, as do many other recent polls. This story is mainly about the fact that an "expert" says sometimes something happens in elections, except when they don't. I could've told you that!

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  4. America's standards

    Ofcourse McCain will say that to Mr President. The only thing remaining will be Mr Maverick and Mrs Maverick accepting the fact.
    GO Blues!!!
    Go Obama/ Biden

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  5. Thatcher Williams

    ROFLMAO! What polls are you guys using? Even RCP says this is a 6.2 point race ... which is 0.8 down from Monday ... and 1.3 down from last thursday – but UP 1.2 on October 19 (which gets most of the polls and trackers completely after the last debate).

    Look – history, on the most part – shows that it is the challenger – not the incumbent (person or party) that surges in the final 2 weeks. That is why most races tighten. HOWEVER – this year is an exception because the challenging party started October in the lead and if you look at the trend for the month of October – Obama is increasing his lead ... not diminishing it.

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  6. Nannie Bouroughs

    Everyone who voted or plans on voting for Senator Oblama should be having Buyer's Remorse; the man is as phoney as a $3 bill and not even a natural born citizen of the USA!


    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  7. judy - san leandro, ca

    The only polls that will really matter are the votes on election day, I really don't pay too much attention to the media hype because your ratings are misleading. McCain is going to lose and the voters won't have buyers remorse because we want "Change" not McSame we're tired of the Republicans that's our buyer's remorse for the last eight years.

    Obama for President

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  8. Gayle

    All I have to say is VOTE

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  9. David

    It's not hard to understand that the race is tightening.

    With stories about Obama's "beloved" aunt living in a Boston slum (she supposedly can't even afford a real cane and uses a metal rod) and questions over whether she is even here legally, are you surprised?

    Isn't he supposed to be "his brother's and his sister's keeper"? If he can't care for the aunt he claimed in his book to love, then how is he going to care for millions of strangers?

    Too bad it takes the British press to come here and expose the story.

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  10. Kathy in Colorado

    Good for McCain!

    Obama thinks he can BUY the presidency - I will be extrmely happy if the voters prove him wrong.

    Obama's ego is frightening...the man needs a lesson in humility.

    This is my first time voting for a republican!!

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  11. carlos

    the republicans never stole it, your party just keeps running losers.

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  12. VA guy

    Finally CNN admitted that race is closing in.. Up until now it was defiant.

    I would also ask Jack (Cafettery) to ask the question if Media has run a honest campaign? He asked us to comment on McCain. how about little introspaction and asking themselves.

    Am I seeing this posted?

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  13. Joe The Engineer

    Wisconsin Girl, dream on, Obama The President.

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  14. Independent for Obama

    If Obama loses I truly believe the republicans would have stolen this election again. My family will be doing pretty darn good under McCain. will be getting a $6,000 tax break.

    I voted for Obama. I be paying extra tax under Obama, but I believe in helping your fellow American.

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  15. Yeah Right

    "Ronad Reagan"? Is that Ronald Reagan's gonad challenged brother?

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  16. SARAH

    People are not Crazy. Enough is Enough

    October 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  17. Rob

    If Barry wins we sure as heck will see it in 2011. Of course we'll be unemployed, out of our homes, yet still having to pay taxes. But Barry and his family will be living just fine, as will Oprah, the Rev., Bill Ayers, and all of Obama's other pals.

    And you koolaid drinkers will still be here saying what a great president he is. He brought the world together! Yeah, to gang up on the U.S. because he made us weak. There's a word for you all – gullable.

    No AlGore, global warming does not exist. We are in the midsts of the biggest snowstorm ever, Snowstorm Obama.

    Obama 08 – Pulling a fast one on America.

    October 30, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  18. Timesupreps

    Funny. RCP poll of polls actually has OBAMA increasing his lead. MMMMMM! Funny how some polls are higher and some lower. But what are the polls saying in the battleground states. That is right, they are growing larger support for OBAMA. And funny how this CNN poll was lambasted by the Repubs on here when Obama was way ahead, but now it is suddenly believable.. FUNNY!! Go to Gallop.. they also have OBAMA increasing his lead. Funny only CNN has his lead decreasing. I would like the zip codes of the phone calls and the # of registered dems and repubs for this survey before making a true analysis.


    October 30, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  19. Hal, Redondo Beach, CA

    Good Luck the polls have varied widely but the universal result Obama leads nationally and in all the key state races.

    In spite of the devisive hate-filled fearmongering by the right-wing ignorencia.

    Obama is the only candidate who has maintained his honor, and who is not afraid of boogie-men.

    The GOP has one message for americans BE AFRAID!!!

    Cowardice is not an American Value!!!!

    October 30, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  20. MN Liberal

    Yep. Bound to happen. Don't trust polls. Need to Vote.

    October 30, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  21. dd

    National polls are not the ones to be watching now. State polls are and they give Obama well more than the 270 he needs, even without the toss up states.

    October 30, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
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