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Nevada: Now It’s Obama By Two in Very Close Race

In Nevada, Barack Obama has a two-point edge over John McCain according to the latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey. It’s Obama 42% and McCain 40%. When “leaners” are included, Obama is on top 47% to 45%. Nevada is one of three southwestern states targeted by the Obama campaign. Like New Mexico and Colorado, it went narrowly for President Bush four years ago.

While the presumptive Democratic nominee’s lead in Nevada is statistically insignificant, it represents quite a change from the last three polls. In each of those, McCain held the advantage by margins ranging from three to six points. A month ago, it was McCain 45%, Obama 42%. Two months ago, McCain had a six point lead and three months ago the GOP hopeful was up by five.

McCain now leads among men by ten but trails by twelve among women. He retains a seventeen point lead among unaffiliated voters.

Obama currently attracts 79% support from Democrats in the state. That’s up five points from a month ago and up fourteen points from two months ago when Clinton was still in the race. McCain wins the vote from 76% of Republicans, little changed from a month ago.

Both candidates gained five percentage points in support when leaners are included in the totals. Most of Obama’s increase came from Democrats leaning in his direction. Most of McCain’s increase came from unaffiliated voters.

Individual polls can sometimes overstate volatility in a race, especial when the results have a four-and-a-half percentage point margin of sampling error. One way of addressing this is to look at a rolling average of three consecutive polls. Using this approach, McCain leads Obama 44% to 41%. A month ago, McCain led by four points in the three-poll average.

McCain is now viewed favorably by 60% of voters in the state. That’s up three points from a month ago and seven points over the past two months.

Obama currently gets positive reviews from 52% of the state’s voters. That’s up two points from both last month five points over the past two months.

As always in this election season, opinions about Obama are more firmly established. He is viewed Very Favorably by 27% and Very Unfavorably by 32%. For McCain, the numbers are 21% Very Favorable and 16% Very Unfavorable.

Rasmussen Markets data immediately prior to release of this poll showed Nevada to be very competitive. These results are updated on a 24/7 basis by market participants and currently show that Republicans are given a % chance of winning Nevada this November. Expectations for Democrats are at %. Nevada has cast its Electoral College Votes for the winning candidate in seven straight Presidential Elections. The last four have been very competitive with nobody carrying the state by more than four percent of the popular vote.

As the poll is released, Nevada is considered a “Toss-Up” in the Rasmussen Reports Balance of Power Calculator. NOTE: Factors other than the latest Rasmussen Reports poll impact the Balance of Power ratings. The current status is indicated on the table in the upper right hand corner of this article.

Sixty-two percent (62%) of Nevada voters favor lifting the ban on offshore oil drilling while 32% are opposed. These figures are close to the national average. Fifty-five percent (55%) favor drilling in the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge.

Like voters across the country, Nevada voters dislike the idea of a national 55 miles-per-hour speed limit. Sixty-four percent (64%) are opposed while just 29% favor the proposal.

While most Nevada voters cast a ballot for George W. Bush four years ago, most (51%) now think the President is doing a poor job. Just 33% say he is doing a good or an excellent job.

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Nevada Toss-Up

Latest RR Poll

RR Poll Avg.

"538" Avg.

RR Mkts.

In Trade

McCain (R)

46%

46%

46%

Obama (D)

50%

50%

48%

This telephone survey of 500 Likely Voters was conducted by Rasmussen Reports July 16, 2008. The margin of sampling error for the survey is +/- 4.5 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.

See Methodology


Nevada Trends: McCain vs. Obama

Date

McCain

Obama

10/27/2008

46%

50%

10/16/2008

45%

50%

10/02/2008

47%

51%

09/11/2008

49%

46%

08/11/2008

45%

42%

07/16/2008

40%

42%

06/18/2008

45%

42%

05/20/2008

46%

40%

04/21/2008

48%

43%

03/19/2008

41%

45%

02/12/2008

38%

50%


Favorable Ratings For Presidential Candidates in Nevada

 

McCain

Obama

Very Favorable

30%

41%

Somewhat Favorable

23%

10%

Somewhat Unfavorable

20%

11%

Very Unfavorable

25%

37%

Not Sure

2%

1%


Rasmussen Reports - Electoral College Balance of Power Summary

Republicans

160

Democrats

173

Toss-Ups & Leaners

205


About Rasmussen Reports

Rasmussen Reports is an electronic publishing firm specializing in the collection, publication, and distribution of public opinion polling information.

The Rasmussen Reports ElectionEdge™ Premium Service for Election 2008 offers the most comprehensive public opinion coverage ever provided for a Presidential election.

Scott Rasmussen, president of Rasmussen Reports, has been an independent pollster for more than a decade.