Global Warming and the 2008 Presidential Election

Report Summary

Nearly two out of three undecided voters say that the presidential candidates’ positions on global warming will influence their vote in the upcoming election, according to a new national survey released jointly today by researchers at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and George Mason University. Consistent with other recent polls, the survey found that 48 percent of registered voters said they will vote or are leaning toward voting for Barack Obama, while 39 percent say they will vote or are leaning toward voting for John McCain. Nine percent of registered voters were still undecided as of Oct. 14.

While few undecided voters rated global warming as the single most important issue that will determine their vote, 62 percent of undecided voters, 64 percent of voters leaning toward McCain and 75 percent of voters leaning toward Obama indicated that global warming is one of several important issues that will influence their vote. “Even in the midst of the nation’s financial turmoil, global warming remains an important issue for large numbers of voters,” said Anthony Leiserowitz, Director of the Project on Climate Change at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies.