Tracking poll: Bush has built solid advantage
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Saturday's CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll indicates GOP candidate Texas Gov. George W. Bush has built a solid advantage during the past few days over presidential rival, Democratic Vice President Al Gore.
Bush currently wins support from 49 percent of all likely voters, compared with 42 percent for Gore. Friday's poll showed Bush leading 52 percent to Gore's 39 percent.
Green Party candidate Ralph Nader lost a percentage point from Friday's poll, dipping from 4 percent to 3 percent, while Reform Party candidate Patrick Buchanan held steady at 1 percent.
It is important to note that this is not a prediction of who will win the race, but instead is merely a snapshot of which candidate those polled -- people likely to vote -- would currently favor.
It's also important to pay less attention to who is leading and concentrate on the candidates' support.
Bush, for example, has 49 percent for Saturday and had 52 percent on Friday. Fifty-two minus 49 is a difference of only 3 percentage points, which is within the Friday poll's margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.
Most important, note that the poll has shown Bush with at least 48 percent of support for four straight days, and Gore with no more than 43 percent during that same time.
That is the kind of stability which indicates that Bush has built a solid advantage over his
rival in the past few days.
As always, the key question is whether he can hold onto that advantage, since neither candidate has been able to permanently take control of this race.
CNN has significantly increased the number of
interviews conducted in its poll. Saturday's poll was conducted from interviews with 1,368 likely voters between October 25 and 27, 2000. Friday's poll was compiled from 851 interviews.
CNN will be releasing the results of its tracking polls every day until the November 7 elections. The polls monitor public opinion of the presidential race over intervals of two to three days.
CNN/USA TODAY/GALLUP POLL
Choice for President
Sampling error: +/-2.5 percentage points
Here are the results of some other national polls on the presidential race.