Wednesday, October 22, 2008

AP-GFK poll shows McCain, Obama in virtual tie

By STEVEN R. HURSTAssociated Press 2008-10-23 08:11 AM

Republican John McCain is accusing Democrat Barack Obama of seeking a socialist redistribution of wealth as a new Associated Press-GfK poll finds the candidates running nearly dead-even less than two weeks before the presidential election.

The poll results were released Wednesday and found Obama at 44 percent to 43 percent for McCain, a possible indication that conservative voters were drifting back to the Republican candidate. The same poll three weeks ago found that Obama had surged to a seven-point lead, lifted by Americans' anxiety over the slumping U.S. economy _ the top issue gripping voters in the 2008 race for the White House.

With the contest still volatile, the new AP-GfK head-to-head result is a departure from some, but not all, recent national polls.

Obama and McCain were essentially tied among likely voters in the latest George Washington University Battleground Poll. In other surveys focusing on likely voters, a Washington Post-ABC News poll showed Obama up by 9 percentage points, while a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll had the margin at 11 points and a survey by the nonpartisan Pew Research Center had Obama leading by 14.

State-by-state polling shows Obama within a few electors of the 270 need to win. The nationwide popular vote does not count for victory in the U.S. system, that depends instead on the electoral college, with members apportioned according to state population.
McCain has been pounding the Obama tax plan, which proposes a reversal of President George W. Bush's tax cuts that mainly benefited the wealthy. The additional revenue, Obama contends, would offset tax breaks he wants to give to the 95 percent of Americans who make less than $250,000 annually.

"Apparently, as my opponent sees it, there's a strict limit to your earnings as well, and it's for the politicians to decide. The proper amount of wealth is not what you can earn, but what government will let you keep," McCain told supporters in New Hampshire, a traditionally anti-tax state he hopes to woo to his side.
McCain was joined by his running mate Sarah Palin at a rally later in the battleground state of Ohio, where the Alaska governor derided Obama as "Barack the Wealth Spreader" and said: "You have to really listen to our opponent's words, because he's hiding his real agenda of redistributing your hard-earned money."

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