Race for the White House still too close and leaves room for interpretation: Political pundits

October 18th, 2008 - 2:39 pm ICT by ANI  

Barack Obama

New York, Oct.18 (ANI): Data on polling trends suggest that the 2008 US presidential elections will be a tight race, and continue to be open to interpretation.
According to Fox News, one group of voters in the latest Gallup daily tracking poll put John McCain within two points of rival Barack Obama, while an AP-Yahoo poll out Friday shows McCain’’s negatives on the rise.
Obama has warned his supporters that the Democrats have a knack for snatching defeat from victory, and a couple of conflicting polls out Friday reinforce the message that with 18 days to go, this presidential election may be closer than many think.
A Gallup daily tracking poll out Friday shows Obama leading John McCain among registered voters 49-43 percent while an AP-Yahoo poll also released Friday show Obama’’s favorability at 57 percent compared to 52 percent for McCain.
The 49 percent in the Gallup poll taken from Monday to Wednesday is the first time since the end of September that Obama has dipped below 50 percent. Obama had been as high as 52 percent earlier this month.
On top of that in the Gallup poll, “traditional voters” — those who are more likely to head to the polls — give Obama 49 percent and McCain 47 percent, well within the 2-point margin of error.
And the AP-Yahoo poll out Friday shows that if the election were held today, 44 percent of adults surveyed would choose Obama while 42 percent would pick McCain, though that poll’’s methodology differs from most other polls.
“The answer is two-fold: This is not primarily a horse race poll, and our story chronicled the dramatic changes in ratings of the candidates. Second, we are focusing on likely voters and our likely voter number shows Obama 5 points ahead of McCain,” FOX News quoted one expert, as saying.
According to the polling data, interviews were conducted online and drawn from an original sample from a panel of respondents recruited by Knowledge Networks via random sampling of telephone land lines with listed and unlisted numbers. The two-point margin in both national polls is the tightest the race has been in some time and with just 18 days left before Election Day, Nov. 4.
With the polls so close — indeed tightening since McCain lost ground to Obama during debate over the economic bailout bill on Capitol Hill — poll watchers should consider both measures, say political pundits. (ANI)

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