Video Voting Site Shows Another Surprise in 2008 Presidential Campaign

Share Article Voters Back Obama on Taxes – but Young Voters Favor McCain Republicans Support McCain but All Other Groups Lean Toward Obama, Except for 18-25 Year-Olds; Obama Supporters Feel More Strongly About Their Candidate, a Groundbreaking Independent Web Video Voting Site, Lets Voters Compare and Vote on 2008 Campaign Videos and Soundbites

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cutting wasteful spending, shutting corporate loopholes and rolling back the Bush tax cuts for some of the wealthiest Americans in the country.

NEW YORK (Business Wire EON) August 19, 2008 -- Voters in the most recent snap poll on groundbreaking independent political Website favor Barack Obama over John McCain on tax policy. But in a surprise, the youngest voters support McCain – the only group other than Republicans to do so.

Overall, voters of nearly all stripes preferred Obama to McCain on taxes, government spending, and the question of which candidate would be better for the economy. Obama supporters felt more strongly about their candidate than McCain supporters did about theirs. But voters aged 18-25 – generally considered an Obama stronghold – leaned toward McCain by a slight margin.

The snap poll – like previous pollClashes – shows a sharply divided electorate, with voters examining candidates closely on each issue.

Voters Support Obama, but Not on Tax Increases

The votes in favor of Obama can't be considered votes for higher taxes – except on corporations and the wealthy. The voting compared Obama and McCain video statements, in which both candidates argued that their tax policies would not penalize working families and small businesses. McCain slammed Obama for proposing higher marginal rates in many categories and said that in a challenged economy, "higher taxes are the last thing we need." Obama claimed that under his policies, families making less than $250,000 a year would not pay higher taxes. He went on to say that unlike McCain, he would pay for his plan by "cutting wasteful spending, shutting corporate loopholes and rolling back the Bush tax cuts for some of the wealthiest Americans in the country."

The snap poll votes were recorded on – the first site that allows voters to directly compare and vote on video soundbites from the 2008 Presidential election campaign.

pollClash Snap Polls Show Video Soundbites Side by Side; Votes Reflect How Strongly Voters Feel

Voters who visit can watch campaign videos of candidates and other key players. But unlike other video sites, shows them in side-by-side windows, then lets voters vote on which are more credible, which are more effective, and which make the better case about critical campaign issues like the economy and national security. Voters cast their votes on a sliding 0-4 scale that shows how strongly they feel about a series of questions pegged to the two videos. Zero is the neutral point between the two and four in either direction shows the strongest preference. New pollClashes are posted frequently on

Across-the-Board Support for Obama on Taxes, Spending, the Economy – Except for Youth Vote, Republicans

Among key results of the snap poll on tax policy, spending and the economy:

Voters in most categories favored Obama on all three questions: Who is right about taxes, who is right about government spending, and who would be better for the economy? Only two categories of voters supported McCain. Voters aged 18-25 were pro-McCain on all three questions, but only by a slight margin (taxes: average vote 0.75; spending: average vote 0.25; the economy: average vote 0.5). Republicans were stronger in support of McCain (taxes: average vote 2.25; spending: average vote 2.10; the economy: average vote 2.10) Obama supporters were more strongly in favor of their candidate than McCain supporters were of theirs. Obama's strongest support came from voters aged 26-35 (taxes: 3.5; spending: 3.1; the economy: 3.5). Democrats were close behind (taxes: 3.1; spending: 3.25; the economy: 3.25). Voters in all other categories were pro-Obama, though by smaller margins. Women supported Obama more strongly than men (women: 1.1 to 1.25; men: 0.1 to 0.25). Independents and voters aged 36-64 skewed slightly toward Obama (average votes 0.1 to 0.25). Voters aged 65 and older preferred Obama more strongly, with average votes of 0.75 to 1). Comments are Extensive

Voter comments were unusually long – a sign of voter engagement in the questions. Some comments were in excess of 200 words.

"I trust Obama for my safety as well as my pocketbook," said one commenter. "Obama just seems more in touch with the people that matter… everyday hard-working families," said another. But a third said, "I hope all you 20-40 [year-old]s love paying taxes and look forward to Obama's changes. By the end of Obama's term I get to retire, and you guys [can] support me."

pollClashes Show a Split Electorate's snap polls continue to show a split electorate. While the current pollClash shows voters of all stripes leaning toward Obama on tax policy, a previous pollClash showed that even Democrats preferred McCain on Iraq, Afghanistan, national security and the war on terror. Two June pollClashes showed that voters leaned toward Obama on the need for economic change – but strongly preferred McCain's views on energy policy and the need for offshore drilling. Those snap polls showed Obama performing better with young voters – in contrast to the most recent results.

These past pollClashes are available to be viewed on's sister site

pollClash Results Suggest Voters are Still Testing Candidates on Issues

"Our results continue to show that voters are looking hard at the candidates and testing them on the issues," said John Hughes, co-founder of "A significant number of are sitting on the fence.. Preferences are clear on some questions, but not overall."

How pollClash Works – and How It Brings Value to 2008 Campaign

"The results also show that can bring real value to the 2008 campaign – by enabling voters to pick apart pre-packaged statements and show how they feel, and how strongly they feel, about the underlying issues," Mr. Hughes said. "The question behind every campaign statement is 'compared to what?' and lets voters address that question directly – in a way that's direct, clear, objective and measurable. It lets them fight back against spin and hype, and creates new levels of accountability. We are independent of influence, our results are immediate and we present the issues in the candidates' own words."

The videos are served from leading public video sites like YouTube and similar sites. enhances the videos by adding direct comparisons.'s technology – created by software firm Clashware allows side-by-side viewing and issue-by-issue voting. Viewers can also post comments – and even create their own pollClashes by posting the videos on YouTube and similar sites, then setting up the clashes on's sister site questions are developed by Clashware in collaboration with Sommerfield Communications through its Pulse polling unit. Both Clashware and Sommerfield Communications are committed to objectivity in the development of the questions and the reporting of results.

For more information, to view results, or to schedule an interview, contact Katarina Wenk-Bodenmiller of Sommerfield Communications at (212) 255-8386 or

About is a simple way for voters to share their opinions and get their voices heard on key issues in the 2008 campaign. On voters can compare two videos side by side – then vote on them. By choosing between two viewpoints by using a simple slider, voters are able to show how strongly they feel about a question, issue or position. They can also see instantly how their vote compares to the overall total, comment on the videos and submit video ideas for future polls. was created by Clashware and Sommerfield Communications/Pulse. Both organizations are committed to objectivity in developing the poll questions and the summaries of poll results.

About Clashware

Clashware is a software tool that allows direct comparison of content. It's designed for marketers, advertisers and researchers who need to create head-to-head comparisons of videos, pictures, music or text in an environment that's highly entertaining for users, while producing accurate and useful results. Clashware works by embedding content in an easy-to-play interactive game that enables participants to compare two pieces of content, then answer questions on a slider system that shows what they think and how strongly they feel. It can be incorporated in Websites, embedded in viral marketing campaigns or used to power focus groups online and in real-world settings. Clashware can be used to improve sales, increase lead capture, create greater user engagement and improve brand favorability and customer satisfaction. For researchers, Clashware provides user comments, segmented demographics and time-of-response tracking. For more information visit

About Sommerfield Communications

Sommerfield Communications is a full-service marketing communications, public relations and corporate communications consulting firm based in New York City, specializing in image management for financial, technology, professional services and emerging growth companies, as well as for not-for-profit organizations and educational institutions. Sommerfield's clients range from some of the largest, most recognized organizations in their industries to start-ups. Sommerfield's Pulse division is involved in various dimensions of opinion polling.

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Katarina Wenk-Bodenmiller
Sommerfield Communications, Inc.
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