Barack Obama's Support is Broadly Based; John McCain Makes Up Ground on Economy

Obama leads McCain 52-45 in ABC News/Washington Post daily tracking poll.

ByABC News
October 27, 2008, 10:35 AM

Oct. 27, 2008— -- With a final full week of campaigning ahead, Barack Obama's grip on the key issue of the presidential race -- the economy -- has loosened slightly.

Yet Obama's advantages are broadly based nonetheless, with higher support in a range of groups than either Al Gore or John Kerry mustered in 2000 or 2004.

In terms of economic distress the race most closely resembles 1992, when Bill Clinton went into Election Day with a 17-point lead in trust to handle the economy.

Obama last week held an almost identical, 18-point advantage on the economy -- but it's eased to 10 points in the latest ABC News/Washington Post tracking poll, its closest in a month.

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That narrowing on the economy has occurred disproportionately among movable voters, the roughly one in 10 who say they haven't made up their minds for sure.

But it also stands out among some of John McCain's core groups, such as married men and conservatives, reflecting more their return home than a shift in predispositions.

Indeed overall vote preferences, including among movables, have not followed, and the race remains essentially steady, with Obama leading McCain by 52-45 percent among likely voters.

Obama's been at or above 50 percent, McCain no better than 46 percent, since mid-September in ABC/Post polls.

Even with a closer gap in trust to handle it, winning on the economy is a tall order for McCain: A steady majority, now 53 percent, calls it the single most important issue in their vote, and those economy voters continue to favor Obama broadly, now by 60-37 percent.

Obama likewise leads, by 71-26 percent in aggregate tracking data, among voters most concerned about the next closest issue, health care, cited by 10 percent as their greatest concern; and by 58-40 percent among the 8 percent most concerned about the Iraq war.

The advantage turns to McCain among other issue voters, including, almost unanimously, those who say their top issue is the U.S. campaign against terrorism -- the issue that boosted George W. Bush to re-election in 2004.