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Gallup Daily: Presidential Contest Remains Close

Gallup Daily: Presidential Contest Remains Close

No continuation of Obama bounce seen in Monday night interviewing

PRINCETON, NJ -- U.S. registered voters are closely divided in their presidential preferences, with 45% favoring Barack Obama in Gallup Poll Daily tracking from July 19-21, and 42% backing John McCain.

Gallup also finds 7% of voters saying they won't vote for either candidate, and another 6% are still undecided.

Obama performed above par with voters in two of the last four days of Gallup Poll Daily tracking, spanning a period of heavy news coverage of his overseas trip to Europe, Afghanistan, and the Middle East. This resulted in the race widening slightly to a difference of six percentage points in Monday's report based on interviewing conducted July 18-20. However, interviewing Monday night showed a closer race, suggesting that the question of how much bounce Obama may receive from his trip is still an open one.

Longer term, the race has been quite stable. Obama's current 3-point lead in the race is nearly identical to the average lead he has held over McCain thus far in July, and matches his 3-point advantage in the race for the month of June. (To view the complete trend since March 7, 2008, click here.) -- Lydia Saad

Survey Methods

For the Gallup Poll Daily tracking survey, Gallup is interviewing no fewer than 1,000 U.S. adults nationwide each day during 2008.

The general-election results are based on combined data from July 19-21, 2008. For results based on this sample of 2,645 registered voters, the maximum margin of sampling error is ±2 percentage points.

Interviews are conducted with respondents on land-line telephones (for respondents with a land-line telephone) and cellular phones (for respondents who are cell-phone only).

In addition to sampling error, question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of public opinion polls.

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