McCain Trails Obama as Bush Falls to New Low

The latest CBS News poll has bad news both for the current Republican president and the Republican who seeks to replace him. Obama leads McCain 48 percent to 42 percent. We can’t count on this holding as polls this far out have not had very good predictive value in the past. Look at George H. W. Bush, Michael Dukakis, and John Kerry’s early numbers. Fortunately there are many factors at work this year which give Obama the edge and which will make it hard for McCain to come back from behind.

One of the factors making it difficult for McCain is the unpopularity of George Bush. He has fallen to a new all time low in this polls at 25 percent. If compared with Gallup’s historical findings, he is barely ahead of the low points for Richard Nixon (24 percent) and Harry Truman (22 percent). He has fallen below Jimmy Carter’s all time low of 26 percent.

One possibly surprising number in the polls is that McCain leads Obama by eight percent among registered independents. This is probably due to many independents registering as Democrats in recent years. This occurred both as part of the general move from the Republican to the Democratic party, along with many independents registering as Democrats to vote for Obama in states where independents could not vote in primaries.

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