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New York: Obama Still Way Ahead 55% to 42%

The race for New York is the closest it’s been in six months, but Barack Obama still leads John McCain by 13 points, 55% to 42%, in the latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of voters in the state.

Obama has the support of 79% of Democrats and 21% of Republicans, while McCain is backed by 77% of GOP voters and 19% of Democrats. Unaffiliated voters favor McCain 50% to 44% (see crosstabs).

Last month, Obama led by 20, and in late June, he held a 31-point lead on his Republican opponent .

This is the first survey in the state since both men chose their running mates. Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin is viewed Very Favorably by 30% of New York voters, while 21% feel that way about her Democratic counterpart, Joseph Biden. The same number have a Very Unfavorable view of Biden, but more voters (37%) say that of Palin.

Over half (56%) say Palin helps McCain’s chances, while 36% say Biden will help Obama. But only 41% think Palin was the right choice for the vice presidential slot.

For Democrats in such a solidly blue state, the news is mixed. While 39% say Biden was the right choice to be the party’s vice presidential nominee, nearly as many (35%) say he wasn’t. In addition, 43% say Hillary Clinton, the junior senator from New York, would have been a better choice for the number two slot, as Biden himself said several days ago. But 40% disagree.

Half of New York voters (50%) say Clinton wants Obama to win the election, but one-third (33%) say she does not.

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McCain and Obama remain very close in both the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll and Electoral College projections.

Thirty-nine percent (39%) of New York voters have a Very Favorable view of Obama, while 22% say their opinion of the Democrat is Very Unfavorable. For McCain, 23% say their opinion is Very Favorable, and nearly as many (21%) rate their view of him as Very Unfavorable. This represents an increase in favorables for both men over the past month, while their unfavorables are the same.

As in much of the country, women are more supportive of Obama than men, 56% to 39%, but men in New York State also give the Democrat the edge by a closer 53% to 45%.

New York has generally been a reliable Democratic state for presidential candidates for decades. John Kerry won the state by 18 points in 2004, and Al Gore carried it by 25 points four years earlier.

Rasmussen Markets data currently give Democrats a % chance of winning New York’s 33 Electoral College votes this fall. Immediately prior to release of this poll, New York was rated as “Safely Democratic” in the Rasmussen Reports Balance of Power Calculator.

Forty-seven percent of New York voters say economic issues are the most important in this election, while 24% say national security is number one. But a plurality (41%) also believe the candidates are not addressing national security enough in the campaign.

Nationally, voters now trust McCain slightly more than Obama on economic issues and substantially more on national security.

Rasmussen Reports has released polls on the presidential race this week for Colorado, Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Utah and Delaware. Additional state poll results will be released at RasmussenReports.com each Monday at 6:00 p.m. Eastern and Tuesday-Friday at 5:00 p.m. Eastern.

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll is released each morning at 9:30 a.m. Eastern. Other polling is released at 7:00 a.m., Noon, and 3:00 p.m. Eastern weekdays along with other updates as needed. Premium Members can review full demographic crosstabs for all state polls and get the first look at all Rasmussen Reports polling data. Learn More.

Fifty percent (50%) give good or excellent marks to Gov. David Paterson, a Democrat, for his job performance, with only 12% rating him poor.

By comparison, only 24% say President Bush is doing a good or excellent job, and 59% characterize his performance as poor. Both figures are down slightly from last month.

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See survey questions and toplines. Crosstabs available for Premium Members only.

New York Safe Democratic

Latest RR Poll

RR Poll Avg.

"538" Avg.

RR Mkts .

In Trade

McCain (R)

37%

37%

35%

Obama (D)

57%

55%

59%

This telephone survey of 500 Likely Voters was conducted by Rasmussen Reports September 15, 2008. The margin of sampling error for the survey is +/- 4.5 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.

See Methodology.


New York Trends: McCain vs. Obama

Date

McCain

Obama

10/14/2008

37%

57%

09/15/2008

42%

55%

08/04/2008

32%

52%

06/30/2008

29%

60%

05/28/2008

33%

52%

04/29/2008

35%

52%

03/11/2008

38%

51%


Favorable Ratings for Presidential Candidates in New York

 

McCain

Obama

Very Favorable

22%

39%

Somewhat Favorable

27%

24%

Somewhat Unfavorable

24%

15%

Very Unfavorable

23%

19%

Not Sure

5%

3%


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.