PRINCETON, NJ -- The latest Gallup Poll Daily tracking results for Sept. 9-11 show a slight, but not statistically significant, three percentage point advantage for John McCain over Barack Obama among registered voters, 48% to 45%.
These results, based on interviewing conducted Tuesday through Thursday, mark the first time since the Sept. 4-6 report that McCain does not have a statistically significant lead over Obama, and also reflect interviewing on Thursday that showed a very close race. It is unknown whether or not Thursday's results may have reflected any possible impact of Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin's widely publicized television interviews with Charles Gibson of ABC News, which began to be broadcast Thursday evening.
The story of the presidential race this year since early June has been a tendency for candidate support levels to return to near parity after one or the other candidate moves into a brief lead, so the days ahead will show whether or not this contest will once again settle back into a "too close to call" structure.
Obama and McCain were together Thursday at memorial services in New York at the site of the 9/11 terrorist attack, but both campaigns have now returned to hot and heavy campaigning, including ads directly attacking each other's positions on issues. (To view the complete trend since March 7, 2008, click here.) -- Frank Newport
(Click here to see how the race currently breaks down by demographic subgroup.)
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 Sept. 9-11, 2008. For results based on this sample of 2,726 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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