NRL News

Romney up 3 in Post/ABC News poll; Republicans more positive about election; Ohio remains ultra-close

by | Oct 25, 2012

Pro-Life Mitt Romney

By Dave Andrusko

As promised, here is the second update on the presidential election for October 25.

At 5:00, the Washington Post reported that for the first time, Mitt Romney had won 50% of likely voters in a Post/ABC News national tracking poll. Mr. Romney led President Obama 50% to 47%, Obama’s “lowest tally in Post-ABC polling since before the national party conventions.” In addition to the three-point advantage, there is this hugely significant news. Jon Cohen writes

“However, Romney does now boast a statistically — and substantively — important lead on the economy, which has long been the central issue of the race. When it comes to handling the nation’s struggling economy, 52 percent of likely voters say they trust Romney more, while 43 percent say they have more faith in the president.

“And just as the challenger has leaped ahead on this score, he has effectively neutralized what has been a consistent fall-back for Obama: economic empathy. In the new poll, 48 percent say Obama is more in tune with the economic problems people are having, and nearly as many, 46 percent, say Romney is the one who is more in touch. Just two weeks ago, Obama had a nine-point lead on the question.”

Then there are the Independents, of whom Cohen writes

“These advantages with independents [on the above] undergird a sizable, 19 percentage-point Romney lead over Obama on the horse race. Should that advantage stick, it would be the sharpest tilt among independents in a presidential election since Ronald Reagan’s 1984 landslide win. (Reagan won independent and other unaffiliated voters 63 to 36 percent, according to the exit poll). Obama won them by eight in 2008.”

Before we get to Ohio, which is attracting enormous attention, a quick word about a poll from the Pew Research Center which I missed when it came out Tuesday.

The headline reads, “Republicans Increasingly Positive about Campaign Democrats’ Views Little Changed Since September,” which is true as far as it goes but understates the dramatic changes that are taking place.

In early September 66% of Democrats said the campaign was interesting and informative, as compared to 50% of Republicans, and 45% of Independents. (This latter figure is important because Independents are breaking Mitt Romney’s way.)

Now over 7 in 10 Republicans (73%) feel the campaign is interesting and informative; Democrats have not moved—66%–while the percentage of Independents who feel this way climbed to 56%.

Note, as compared to 2008, while the percentage of Republicans who found the campaign interesting and informative has changed very little, there has  been a huge fall off among Democrats—from 80% to 66%.

Back to Ohio, which we talked about yesterday. I was watching MSNBC which was gloating over a TIME magazine poll that found Obama up 5 points (49%  to 44%), a real turnaround, if true, since Mr. Romney has been steadily closing.

Of course, a closer look at the sample shows that the percentage of Republicans surveyed is fewer than the number who voted in 2008 [!], with the sample being a plus 9 advantage for Democrats. Only by this and a couple of other gimmicks can TIME get around the fact that Romney enjoyed a 15 point advantage among Independents.  Not exactly a voter survey that will likely mirror the electorate that turns out in twelve days.

[An excellent analysis of the TIME poll–“the most worthless poll of 2012”—can be found at]

We talked briefly yesterday about at an Ohio  poll from Survey USA which polled 609 likely and actual voters (those who have already cast ballots). Obama was up 3 points (47% to 44%).

But Romney was ahead 8 points among Independents, a  category Obama won by 8 points in 2008—a turnaround of 16 points. Obama is ahead among women by 12 points; Romney was up by 7 among men.

However it’s hard to imagine Romney faring that poorly among men. Obama is getting crushed nationally among white men largely because they “say he [Romney], not Obama understands the economic problems people in this country are having,” according to the Washington Post’s Scott Clement and Jon Cohen.

And don’t forget that a couple of days ago Suffolk University’s poll had  Romney and Obama tied at 47%. Today Rasmussen has them tied at 48%.

So, whenever you hear that Romney has “lost momentum,” know there is no objective reason to believe this is true.

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Categories: Polling