VOTE – Again, views of the candidates' spouses do not significantly influence vote choices. In a regression analysis – a way of sorting out the independent influence of various factors – support for Barack Obama is predicted by partisanship, preference for him over John McCain on personal attributes, preference for Barack Obama to handle top issues and favorable views of him – but not by favorable views of his wife. The same holds true for Cindy McCain in predicting support for her husband's candidacy.
A result from an ABC/Post poll in December pointed the same way: Sixteen percent said that in deciding their vote they give a "great amount" of weight to the candidates' spouses; by contrast 65 percent put a great amount of weight on the issues, 58 percent on the candidates' personal qualities and 54 percent on their professional ability.
METHODOLOGY - This ABC News/Washington Post poll was conducted by telephone June 12-15, 2008, among a random national sample of 1,125 adults, including an oversample of African Americans (weighted to their correct share of the national population), for a total of 201 black respondents. The results from the full survey have a 3-point error margin. Sampling, data collection and tabulation by TNS of Horsham, PA.