Obama maintains double-digit poll lead


Democrat Barack Obama holds a 10-point lead over Republican rival John McCain in the US presidential race, according to a Reuters/C-Span/Zogby poll released today.

However, other polls have shown the race to be tighter between the two candidates.

Mr Obama leads Mr McCain by 51 per cent to 41 per cent among likely US voters in the three-day, Reuters/C-Span/Zogby tracking poll, which has a margin of error of 2.9 points. Mr Obama had a 12-point lead on Thursday.

The numbers marked the end of a four-day slide for Mr McCain, who has seen his rival's lead widen in national surveys as well as polls in many of the battleground states that will decide the November 4th election.

But pollster John Zogby said the strength of Mr Obama's support - which has grown amid increasingly dismal economic news - remained impressive.

The Illinois senator (47) continues to win support from women and independent voters, two groups expected to play pivotal roles in this year's election.

Among independents, the Illinois senator is ahead by 56 per cent to 30 per cent, while women back Mr Obama by a 20-point margin, 58 per cent to 38 per cent.

Mr Obama also leads among Catholic voters by 22 points, and among Protestants who are not evangelical by 48 per cent to 44 percent. Evangelical or "born-again" voters back Mr McCain by 60 per cent to 34 per cent for Mr Obama.

But, according to the latest Associated Press-GfK poll, the two men are a mere one point apart in favour of Mr Obama. The same poll three weeks ago found that the Democrat was seven points ahead.

According to the poll researchers, the presidential race may have tightened after the final television debate, with Mr McCain gaining support among whites and those earning less than $50,000 (€38,999).

Elsewhere, the George Washington University Battleground Poll, conducted by a Republican strategist and a Democratic pollster, equally put the race tied.

Additional reporting Reuters