Reuters/Zogby Poll: McCain Makes a Move, Takes 5-Point Lead Over Obama

Zogby News Release reprinted by permission at IC:

Released: August 20, 2008

Reuters/Zogby Poll: McCain Makes a Move, Takes 5-Point Lead Over Obama

Obama loses ground among Dems, women, Catholics & even younger voters

UTICA, New York – As Russian tanks rolled into the Republic of Georgia and the presidential candidates met over the weekend in the first joint issues forum of the fall campaign, the latest polling includes drama almost as compelling – Republican John McCain has taken a five-point lead over Democrat Barack Obama in the race for President, the latest Reuters/Zogby telephone survey shows.

McCain leads Obama by a 46% to 41% margin.

And McCain not only enjoys a five-point edge in a two-way race against Obama, but also in a four-way contest including liberal independent candidate Ralph Nader and Libertarian Bob Barr, the poll reveals. In the four-way contest, McCain wins 44% support, Obama 39%, Barr 3% and Nader 2%.

This latest Reuters/Zogby poll is a dramatic reversal from the identical survey taken last month – in the July 9-13 Reuters/Zogby survey, Obama led McCain, 47% to 40%. In the four-way race last month, Obama held a 10-point lead over McCain.

The poll shows Obama losing voters to McCain in groups where Obama had bigger leads a month ago, such as Democrats, women and younger voters. Obama also lost ground among Catholics and Southerners.

This table shows Obama’s loss of support between the July and August Reuters/Zogby polls among some significant sub-groups (the margin of error is greater for sub-groups than the sample as a whole).

>McCain’s surge follows a month in which he has aggressively portrayed Obama as an out-of-touch elitist and celebrity not prepared to be President. McCain also continues to accuse Obama of being willing to lose in Iraq in order to win the election. While Obama was on vacation last week, McCain took the spotlight, talking tough about Russia’s military action against the Republic of Georgia.

Pollster John Zogby: “Since Obama returned from his overseas trip, it seems like McCain has thrown all the punches. Clearly, the blows have landed. In recent days, Obama is fighting back, going after McCain on the economy, the issue voters care about most. McCain has changed the dynamic of the race heading into the two conventions. That puts more pressure on Obama to go to Denver and effectively define himself and McCain.”

Here is how voters rated issues most important to them in choosing a President: economy 47%, War in Iraq 12%, energy prices 8%, healthcare 7%, threat of attack on the U.S. 6%, immigration 5% and the environment 4%.

For a detailed methodological statement on this survey, please visit:



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