Racial Divide Persists Despite Obama: Poll

Racial attitudes have barely budged despite groundbreaking run
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 16, 2008 12:57 AM CDT
Democratic presidential candidate, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., greets supporters at the NAACP convention in Cincinnati, Monday, July 14, 2008.    (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
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(Newser) – Barack Obama's often hailed "post-racial" run for the White House is, in fact, unfolding in an America still sharply divided by race, a New York Times/CBS News poll has discovered. The lives of most Americans are as racially segregated as they were 8 years ago, the poll says. Black and white Americans differed on almost every question on race relations—although both agreed America is ready for a black president.

Among the poll' s findings:

  • 80% of black voters say they have a favorable opinion of Obama, compared with just 30% of whites.
  • 60% of blacks say race relations are "generally bad," versus 34% of whites.
  • 70% of blacks say they have encountered racial discrimination—up from 62% in 2000—compared with 26% of whites.
  • 58% of black voters have a favorable opinion of Michelle Obama, as opposed to 26% of whites.
  • Among whites, John McCain leads by 46% to 37%. Among blacks, Obama is ahead 89% to 2%.