New National Poll Gives John McCain 5-Point Lead Over Barack Obama

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Aug 20, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

New National Poll Gives John McCain 5-Point Lead Over Barack Obama

by Steven Ertelt Editor
August 20
, 2008

Washington, DC ( — A new national poll gives presidential candidate John McCain a five percentage point lead over his pro-abortion rival Barack Obama. The new Reuters/Zogby poll released on Wednesday puts the race at 46 percent for McCain and 41 percent for Obama.

The survey comes out just days after McCain scored big with his strong pro-life performance at a forum with Obama — which boosted his standing with pro-life voters.

During the event, Obama staked out a clear pro-abortion position and McCain promised he would run a pro-life administration should he be elected.

The five percent lead among likely voters reverses the seven percent advantage Obama enjoyed in July and it marks the first occasion on which McCain has held a lead in the monthly poll.

The survey also found McCain with a lead when third-party candidates are taken into account, though they normally score a higher percentage in polls at this point in the election than they receive in actual voting in November.

The poll showed McCain at 44 percent, Obama 39 percent, Libertarian Party candidate Bob Barr at 3 percent and independent candidate Ralph Nader with 2 percent.

Other national polls released on Wednesday also show the numbers moving in McCain’s direction.

A poll from the Tarrance Group and Lake Research has McCain at 40 percent and Obama at 39 percent with 19 percent undecided.

When pressed further to make a choice, the poll found McCain also leading by one percent 47-46 percent — a departure from its May 2008 poll showing Obama with a 49-47 percent advantage.

That survey gave Obama a 57-39 percent approval rating and McCain a similar 57-36 percent approval rating. It found Americans are now more likely to say that McCain is a strong leader and shares their views than Obama.

Other national surveys show a tight race as well, with the daily Rasmussen tracking poll having Obama ahead 47 to 46 percent when "leaners" are included and both have similar approval ratings.

The Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll have both candidates also in a statistical tie with Obama at 45 percent, McCain 43 percent and other candidates getting two percent.

That survey shows Obama’s favorable rating dropping from 59 to 48 percent since its June poll and his negative rating climbing from 27 to 35 percent.

It also showed 90 percent of Republicans are behind McCain while just 80 percent of Democrats back Obama. And 11 percent of Democrats are undecided compared to just 3 percent of Republicans.


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