According to a new Pew poll today President Obama has failed to regain much of the support he lost in the days following the first presidential debate and the race is now even among likely voters: 47% favor Obama while an identical percentage supports Mitt Romney.
The latest national survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, conducted Oct. 24-28 among 1,678 registered voters, including 1,495 likely voters, finds President Obama holding a statistically insignificant two-point edge among registered voters: 47% to 45%. This is little different from the 46% to 46% standoff among registered voters observed in early October, in the days following the first debate.
Pew Poll shows when the sample is narrowed to likely voters, the balance of opinion shifts slightly in Romney’s direction, as it did in early October. This reflects Romney’s turnout advantage over Obama, which could loom larger as Election Day approaches. In both October surveys, more Republicans and Republican leaners than Democrats and Democratic leaners are predicted to be likely voters. In September, the gap was more modest.
According to Pew poll surveys over the past month have found Republicans becoming much more upbeat about the race and about Mitt Romney himself. More Republicans now see the campaign as interesting and informative. And compared with September, a greater proportion of Romney voters now say they are voting for him rather than against Obama.The deadlock in candidate support continues to reflect the offsetting strengths and weaknesses of the two candidates. Romney’s personal image has improved substantially since the summer, and his favorability rating among registered voters 50 percent is now about the same as Obama’s 52% percent.
The new poll showed Obama continues to lead his rival on many personal characteristics and issues. Obama is seen as the candidate with more moderate positions on issues and as more willing to work with members of the other party. He also holds wide advantages on empathy and consistency.
Pew Poll shows Romney’s strengths, and Obama’s weaknesses, continue to be the economy and the budget deficit. More see the former Massachusetts governor as better able to improve the job situation, by a 50% to 42% margin. Half of voters agree that “Obama doesn’t know how to turn the economy around.” And more voters say Romney has new ideas than say that about Obama (46% vs. 41%).
The poll finds that this year’s debates collectively have had a much more positive impact on opinions of Romney than on views of Obama. Twice as many voters say they have a better opinion of Romney as a result of the debates than say that about Obama (36% vs. 18%).
Poll showed Mitt Romney continues to run about even with Obama on a number of issues on which he trailed earlier in the campaign, including health care and energy. Similarly, voters are divided over whether Obama (46%) or Romney (44%) would do better in dealing with taxes.
The Pew poll shows a modest gender gap. Men lean to Romney by a seven-point margin, women lean to Obama by about the same margin (six points). The marital gap is much wider. Both married men and women favor Romney, while 59 percent of unmarried women – and 56 percent of unmarried men support Obama. The swing vote has not decreased significantly since early October. Among likely voters, 13percent are either undecided, lean toward a candidate or support Romney or Obama but say they could still change their mind. In early October, 14% were swing voters.