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CNN poll: Economy far ahead of war as top issue in 2008 race

  • Story Highlights
  • New poll: 49 percent say the economy is the top issue in their vote for president
  • Poll suggests inflation is the top economic problem in the minds of most Americans
  • Iraq War was top issue in most of 2007; now a distant second, at 19 percent
  • Next Article in Politics »
By Paul Steinhauser
CNN Deputy Political Director
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INDIANAPOLIS, Indiana (CNN) -- A new poll indicates that the economy is issue No. 1 with American voters, now more than ever.

Forty-nine percent of those questioned in a new CNN/Opinion Research Corp. survey released Friday said the economy is the top issue in their vote for president, seven points higher than found in a March survey.

The Iraq War is a distant second, with 19 percent of those polled saying it's the most important issue, followed by the issues of health care at 14 percent, terrorism at 9 percent and immigration at 8 percent.

"Through most of 2007, the war in Iraq was the top issue in voters' minds," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "But starting in November, the economy and Iraq tied for first and by December the economy was in the lead. Now the economy beats the war by more than 2-to-1."

The poll suggests that inflation is the top economic issue for most Americans, with 47 percent of those questioned identifying it as the biggest economic problem.

The housing crisis, at 19 percent, came in second, followed by taxes,13 percent; unemployment, 13 percent; and the stock market, 5 percent.

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Both gasoline prices and food prices have skyrocketed this year, but 68 percent of respondents said prices at the pump concern them more, while 23 answered food prices did.

The CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll was conducted Monday through Wednesday, with 1,008 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

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