A new Gallup Poll of likely voters puts Republican presidential candidate John McCain within two percentage points of his Democratic rival, Barack Obama, 49 percent to 47 percent, which is well within the poll’s margin of error.
The narrowed gap occurs in Gallup's "traditional" likely voter model. The poll, which Gallup has employed for past elections, factors in prior voting behavior as well as current voting intention. This has generally shown a closer contest, reflecting the fact that Republicans have typically been more likely to vote than Democrats in previous elections.
It also puts McCain closer in the presidential race than other polls, which have Obama with leads of between 4 and 15 percentage points, according to Real Clear Politics.
According to a Reuters/C-SPAN/ZOGBY poll also released Tuesday, Obama holds a 4-point lead over McCain in the U.S. presidential race, 49 percent to 45 percent among likely U.S. voters. That survey had a margin of error of 2.9 points and was reflected a slight gain for McCain when compared to the previous four-day tracking poll.
McCain, a veteran Arizona senator, has sliced Obama's 12-point advantage by more than half in the last five days but he has not been able to break through the 45 percent support mark.
When the national tracking poll debuted on October 6, Obama led by 3 points, 48 percent to 45 percent. In the ensuing three weeks, McCain's support has not been higher than 45 percent and Obama's support has not been lower than 48 percent.
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