Polls: Presidential Race Tightens After VP Debate, McCain Down 2-3 to Obama

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Oct 7, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Polls: Presidential Race Tightens After VP Debate, McCain Down 2-3 to Obama

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
October 7
, 2008

Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Barack Obama raced to a large single digit lead across the country and in key battleground states last week thanks to negative economic news. However, a new CBS News poll finds Sarah Palin’s performance in the lone vice-presidential debate has helped John McCain recapture some of that ground.

Obama led by nine percentage points in a poll conducted by the network last Wednesday but a new poll released today finds McCain behind 47 to 43 percent among registered voters.

When the poll targets only likely voters, McCain is trailing Obama by a narrower 48 to 45 percentage point margin.

The poll found about 20 percent of voters have yet to commit to a candidate, though the survey included leaners for each candidate in both of the summaries.

The CBS News survey also found the percentage of voters who now say they have a favorable view of Sarah Palin rose 8 points to 40 percent and those who say the same about Joe Biden rose 6 points to 40 percent.

However, the CBS News survey still has bad news for McCain as the pro-abortion candidate leads him by 20 points in terms of how excited voters are for the candidate they support. Some 58 percent of Obama voters say they are enthusiastic while just 38 percent of McCain voters are excited.

McCain can improve his standing further with a good showing in tonight’s debate as two-thirds of voters indicate they will watch the event.

Meanwhile, a new Zogby daily tracking poll finds Obama’s lead has been cut to three percentage points after it was at higher levels last week.

Obama leads McCain among likely voters by a 48-45 percent margin — the same as the CBS News poll found. Four percent of voters were undecided and another two percent are backing other candidates.

The poll found Obama led among independents by 49 percent to 42 percent and among women by 51 percent to 42 percent. Obama also led among Hispanics, young voters, self-described moderates and those making less than $50,000 a year while McCain led among men, whites, older voters, Catholics, and evangelicals.

"Obama is leading among the key target groups, but this race is nowhere close to over," pollster John Zogby said. "The deal is far from closed."

McCain was rated favorably by 57 percent, while Obama was rated favorably by 55 percent.

Like the CBS News poll, the Zogby survey was taken Saturday through Monday after the vice-presidential debate.

A third poll, the Diageo/Hotline tracking poll, finds the race tightening as well with Obama ahead just two percent — 46 to 44 percent. That’s a change from the 5-7 percentage point advantage Obama had last week.

Like the CBS News and Zogby poll, the Hotline survey found voters no longer think Obama is best prepared to handle the economy as voters split on that question by a 42-42 percentage point margin.

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