WISCONSINREPORT.COM (09/23/08) - Probable voters in four Battleground States are looking at the Barack Obama - Joe Biden ticket as the one that is more likely to bring about Change. By 19 - 24 point margins, voters in Wisconsin, Colorado, Michigan, and Minnesota say Democrat Barack Obama, not Republican John McCain, is the candidate of change. That poll result lifts Senator Obama into the lead in these battleground states, according to four simultaneous Quinnipiac University polls of likely voters, conducted in partnership with The Wall Street Journal and WashingtonPost.com.
More voters in each state also would rather see Democratic vice presidential candidate Sen. Joseph Biden become President, even though voters in each state say Sen. McCain's selection of Gov. Sarah Palin as running mate is a good choice.
Sen. Obama has double-digit leads among women in every state except Minnesota, where his six-point lead leaves him with only a two-point edge among all voters. Overall results show:
- Wisconsin: Obama leads McCain 49 - 42 percent, compared to 50 - 39 percent July 24.
- Colorado: Obama leads 49 - 45 percent, compared to 47 percent for McCain and 46 percent for Obama August 24;
- Michigan: Obama tops McCain 48 - 44 percent, compared to 46 - 42 percent July 24;
- Minnesota: Obama leads 47 - 45 percent, compared to 46 - 44 percent July 24;
"With a lousy economy, an unpopular war and an even less popular Republican President, it's difficult to find voters who don't want change, " said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
"Sen. Obama, who leads in all four states, has made himself the candidate of change with a dual-track strategy: Joining Sen. McCain at the hip with President George Bush, who symbolizes the status quo, while sharply defining himself and his policies as the antithesis of the President," Brown said.
The Wall Street meltdown while these polls were in the field probably fed the public desire for change and seemed to benefit Sen. Obama," Brown added.
"Despite Gov. Palin's presence on the Republican ticket, Obama continues to do well enough among white women - who are the key swing group in the election - to take the lead. His ability to remain competitive among white women and hold down Sen. McCain's margin among white men will be the key to his winning the election."
The poll shows that currently approximately only one-fourth of United States citizens approve of President Bush's presidency: 24 - 71 percent in Colorado; 25 - 71 percent in Michigan; 24 - 71 percent in Minnesota; 26 - 69 percent in Wisconsin.
Wisconsin women voters back Obama 53 - 37 percent while men back McCain 48 - 45 percent. Obama leads 55 - 38 percent among voters 18 to 34 years old, 47 - 44 percent among voters 35 to 54 years old and 49 - 43 percent among voters over 55.
Obama rather than McCain is the candidate of change, voters say 45 - 22 percent.
Palin is a good choice, voters say 57 - 33 percent and Biden is a good choice, voters say 47 - 33 percent. Voters prefer Biden as President 46 - 42 percent. Women prefer Biden 47 - 37 percent while men back Palin by a narrow 46 - 44 percent.
The economy is the biggest issue, 51 percent say, and Obama understands it better, voters say 47 - 40 percent. McCain understands foreign policy better, voters say 65 - 23 percent.
"Sen. McCain has closed the gap from 11 points to seven by picking up support from independent women, but Sen. Obama is holding his own among blue collar workers, a group McCain must swing into his column if he wants to win the state," Richards said.
Obama leads 55 - 40 percent among Colorado women likely voters, while men back McCain 49 - 42 percent. White voters back McCain 51 - 44 percent as Hispanic voters go with Obama 68 - 26 percent. Obama and McCain are tied 48 - 48 percent with voters 18 to 34 years old, while voters 35 to 54 back Obama 52 - 42 percent. Voters over 55 go 47 percent with McCain and 46 percent with Obama.
Obama will bring change, 46 percent of voters say, while 22 percent say McCain will bring change and 26 percent say neither candidate will bring change.
McCain's selection of Gov. Palin as a running mate is a good choice, voters say 55 - 38 percent, and Obama's selection of Sen. Biden is a good choice, voters say 52 - 32 percent.
But by a 49 - 42 percent margin, voters would rather see Biden as President. Women pick Biden 52 - 37 percent while men go 46 percent to Palin and 45 percent Biden.
The economy is the most important issue in the election, 51 percent of Colorado voters say. Obama better understands the economy, voters say 47 - 41 percent, while McCain better understands foreign policy, voters say 63 - 29 percent.
In the U.S. Senate race, U.S. Rep. Mark Udall, the Democrat, leads Republican Robert Schaffer 48 - 40 percent, compared to a 44 - 44 percent tie July 24.
"Two years ago when the Democrats picked Denver for their convention, one of the main reasons was the hope it would help them win Colorado, which is shaping up as a key state in the Electoral College. Sen. Obama has come from behind to take the lead there and it is a reasonable assumption that the convention has something to do with this," Brown said.
Michigan women voters back Obama 52 - 40 percent, while men back McCain 49 - 44 percent. White voters back McCain 51 - 41 percent, as black voters support Obama 93 - 5 percent. The Democrat leads 51 - 48 percent among voters 18 to 34, and gets 47 percent of voters 35 to 54 to McCain's 45 percent. Voters over 55 back Obama 49 - 41 percent.
Obama rather than McCain is the candidate of change, voters say 43 - 21 percent.
Palin's selection is a good choice, voters say 58 - 32 percent, while these same voters say 51 - 30 percent that Biden is a good choice.
By a 47 - 42 percent margin, voters would rather see Biden as President. Women back Biden 50 - 38 percent while men go 47 percent for Palin and 45 percent for Biden.
The economy is the most important issue, 58 percent of Michigan voters say, and Obama understands it better, voters say 50 - 38 percent. McCain understands foreign policy better, voters say 64 - 26 percent.
"Sen. Obama's lead in Michigan is built upon two key changes since the last Quinnipiac University poll: He has consolidated the Democratic base to the same degree that Sen. McCain has coalesced the Republican vote, and his lead among those who see the economy as the most important issue has almost doubled, from 50 - 39 percent to 55 - 35 percent," Brown said.
Obama leads McCain 49 - 43 percent with women, while men go 47 percent for McCain and 45 percent for Obama. White voters go with McCain 48 - 44 percent. Voters 18 to 34 years go 51 - 43 percent for Obama. Voters 35 to 54 go 51 - 43 percent for McCain, with the Democrat up 50 - 40 percent among voters over 55.
Obama rather than McCain is the candidate of change, voters say 43 - 24 percent.
Palin is a good choice, voters say 56 - 35 percent and Biden is a good choice, these voters say 52 - 31 percent. They would rather see Biden step up as President, voters say 50 - 41 percent, including women 49 - 39 percent and men 50 - 43 percent.
The economy is the biggest issue, 55 percent of voters say. Voters tie 45 - 45 percent on who better understands the economy, but say 66 - 24 percent that McCain understands foreign policy better.
In the Minnesota U.S. Senate race, Republican incumbent Sen. Norm Coleman tops Democrat Al Franken 49 - 42 percent, compared to 53 - 38 percent July 24.
"Sen. John McCain is within striking distance in Minnesota for two reasons: Republicans held their convention in the state and the selection of Gov. Sarah Palin brought a new wave of independent women to the GOP ticket, offsetting a big swing by independent men to Obama," said Clay F. Richards, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
"Al Franken now trails Sen. Norman Coleman by seven points, down from 15, mainly because Democratic support for Coleman has dropped eight points from 19 points in the last poll."
From September 14 - 21, Quinnipiac University surveyed:
- 1,418 Colorado likely voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.6 percent;
- 1,364 Michigan likely voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.7 percent;
- 1,301 Minnesota likely voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.7 percent;
- 1,313 Wisconsin likely voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.7 percent.
The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Florida, Ohio and nationwide as a public service and for research.
These surveys of Colorado, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan are conducted in partnership with The Wall Street Journal and washingtonpost.com.