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PRINCETON, NJ -- The latest Gallup Poll Daily tracking update on registered voters' presidential preferences shows Barack Obama with a two point advantage over John McCain, 46% to 44%.
From a broad perspective, these latest results, based on interviewing conducted Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday, are reflective of the average levels of support for Obama and McCain all summer. Obama has maintained an average three percentage point margin over McCain through June and July, and the current results show little deviation from that pattern. Obama has been unable to sustain a statistically significant lead over McCain, while the latter has been unable to move into even a slight lead over Obama. (To view the complete trend since March 7, 2008, click here.)
Looking ahead, a "lull in the action" is widely expected between Aug. 8 and the beginning of the Democratic convention as voters' attentions turn to the Beijing Olympics, commencing on Friday. It is possible that Obama may attempt to gain the spotlight before then with a surprise announcement of his vice presidential choice, and he will almost certainly announce his choice before the Denver convention gets underway. (It is also possible, of course, that McCain may make a surprise announcement of his vice presidential choice at any time). These vice presidential announcements may cause some change in voter support patterns, but the looming events that have the greatest potential to disrupt the stable pattern of the summer are the two back-to-back conventions in late August and early September. -- Frank Newport
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 Aug. 3-5, 2008. For results based on this sample of 2,691 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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