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McCain Hangs On by One in North Carolina

The presidential race in North Carolina remains a dead heat, with John McCain just edging out Barack Obama 49% to 48%, according to the latest Fox News/Rasmussen Reports poll.

Four days ago, McCain held a two-point lead over the Democrat. Last week’s Fox/Rasmussen poll of the state found Obama leading 51% to 48%.

For years, North Carolina had been considered a safely Republican state, as no Democrat has won the state since Jimmy Carter in 1976. Holding North Carolina is critical for McCain to have a chance at winning the election next week.

Just two percent (2%) say they are still undecided.

Obama leads among North Carolina voters who have already cast their ballots, while McCain leads among those who have not. Of those who made their choice but have not yet voted, nine percent (9%) say there is still a chance they could change their minds before Election Day.

A big shift this week comes from unaffiliated voters, who heavily favored McCain in the last poll. Those voters now favor Obama by a 20-point margin. McCain manages to pick up support from 15% of Democrats, up from 11% last week, while just six percent (6%) of Republicans say they will vote for Obama.

Men continue to favor McCain by double digits, while women choose Obama 55% to 42%.

McCain has a big lead over Obama among white voters in North Carolina, 61% to 35%. Obama has a dominant 91% to 7% lead among non-white voters.

McCain is viewed favorably by 59% and unfavorably by 40%. For Obama, those ratings are 52% favorable, 47% unfavorable.

Rasmussen Markets data currently gives McCain a % chance of winning North Carolina’s 15 Electoral College votes on Election Day. These results are updated on a 24/7 basis by market participants. It costs nothing to join, so add your voice to the collective wisdom. The Tar Heel state is rated 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.

Predict which candidate you think will win North Carolina's Electoral College votes this year.

Both candidates boast of their ability to bring change to Washington, and one-third of voters in North Carolina (34%) say the ability to bring needed change is the most important quality in a candidate. Twenty-six percent (26%) of voters say personal values are key, while 25% value a candidate with the right experience the most. Republican voters value experience and personal values the most, while Democrats and unaffiliated voters put higher importance on the ability to bring change.

Voters in North Carolina trust McCain more than Obama by a 50% to 45% margin. However, the candidates are tied in terms of trust on the economy and jobs at 48%. When it comes to voter trust on national security and the War on Terror, McCain holds a 55% to 42% edge.

If faced with life’s toughest decision, 49% of North Carolina voters say they would turn to McCain for advice, while 44% say they would consult Obama.

Most voters (70%) say it is at least somewhat likely they would take 10 minutes to answer an exit poll after voting this year, while 28% they are not likely to do so. Democrats in North Carolina are far more likely than Republicans and unaffiliated voters to participate in an exit poll.

Rasmussen Reports and Fox News Channel also have jointly released several other battleground state polls today, including numbers from Florida, Colorado, Missouri, Ohio and Virginia.

Electoral College projections now show Obama leading 260-163. When “leaners” are included, Obama leads 286-174. A total of 270 Electoral Votes are needed to win the White House.

 

Recent statewide presidential polls also have been released for Arizona, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia and Wisconsin. Demographic crosstabs for all state polling are available for Premium Members. Learn More.

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

North Carolina Toss-Up

Latest RR Poll

RR Poll Avg.

"538" Avg.

RR Mkts.

In Trade

McCain (R)

50%

49%

47%

Obama (D)

49%

49%

47%

This telephone survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted by Rasmussen Reports on October 26, 2008. The margin of sampling error for the survey is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.


See Methodology


North Carolina Trends: McCain vs. Obama

Date

McCain

Obama

11/02/2008

50%

49%

10/29/2008

48%

50%

10/26/2008

49%

48%

10/23/2008

50%

48%

10/19/2008

48%

51%

10/12/2008

48%

48%

10/09/2008

48%

49%

09/30/2008

47%

50%

09/23/2008

47%

49%

09/18/2008

50%

47%

08/13/2008

46%

42%

07/15/2008

45%

42%

06/10/2008

45%

43%

05/08/2008

48%

45%

04/10/2008

47%

47%

03/20/2008

51%

42%


Favorable Ratings for Presidential Candidates in North Carolina

 

McCain

Obama

Very Favorable

37%

45%

Somewhat Favorable

18%

8%

Somewhat Unfavorable

18%

12%

Very Unfavorable

25%

34%

Not Sure

1%

2%


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.