WASHINGTON (UPI) — A post-debate poll indicates Democratic U.S. presidential nominee Barack Obama won Friday night’s first presidential debate in Oxford, Miss.
The CNN/Opinion Research Corp. survey, conducted shortly after the debate ended, showed 51 percent thought Obama, a U.S. senator from Illinois, did the best job, while 38 percent said Republican opponent Sen. John McCain of Arizona won.
Only people who watched the debate were questioned and the audience included more Democrats than Republicans. Some 524 people were polled by telephone Sept. 26 after the end of the debate.
There were big differences by gender. Men were nearly evenly split, with 46 percent giving the win to McCain and 43 percent to Obama while women voters gave Obama the win, preferring him to McCain 59 percent 31 percent, CNN said.
“It can be reasonably concluded, especially after accounting for the slight Democratic bias in the survey, that we witnessed a tie in Mississippi tonight,” said CNN Senior Political Researcher Alan Silverleib. “But given the direction of the campaign over the last couple of weeks, a tie translates to a win for Obama.”
The pollsters said the margin of error for the survey was 4.5 percent.